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Son who attacked mother pleads

May 25, 2000

A man who attacked his mother with a knife got a suspended sentence Thursday from Washington County Circuit Judge John H. McDowell.

Jason Abbott, 19, of Hagerstown, pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment. McDowell sentenced him to 18 months in jail and suspended all but the two weeks Abbott already served.

Charges of first- and second-degree assault were dropped in exchange for the plea.

"A weapon was wielded ... your mother's safety was in danger," McDowell said. "This was more than just lost temper."

Deputy Washington County State's Attorney Charles Strong said the Dec. 4, 1999, incident occurred at the View Street home Abbott shared with his mother at the time.

Hagerstown City Police were sent there at 3:20 p.m. after a call came in about a man with a knife.

Abbott, who had recently moved back with his mother after living with his father for several years, apparently was angry that he didn't have his own room, Strong said.

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Abbott held his mother down on the couch, refusing to let her leave, Strong said.

He then got a knife, held it over his mother's head and said he was going to kill her, Strong said.

When the woman got free, she called police, who arrived to find Abbott hiding in the attic, Strong said.

The woman told McDowell she called police in the hope of getting her son some counseling. He has since moved out and gotten into counseling, court records said.

"My mother has done everything for me," Abbott said tearfully. "It won't happen again."

McDowell ordered Abbott to continue counseling while on supervised probation and fined him $100.

- Marlo Barnhart

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