City man charged in stabbing

August 19, 2003|by GREGORY T. SIMMONS

A Hagerstown man remained hospitalized Monday after being stabbed in the abdomen with a sword Sunday evening, and his brother-in-law was being held at the Washington County Detention Center on charges of attempted murder, Hagerstown City Police said.

Police and emergency crews were called to 113 E. Franklin St., Apartment B, after a stabbing was reported at about 10 p.m., police said.

Michael Brandon Barnett, 21, of 113 E. Franklin St., Apt. B, suffered a stab wound to his abdomen, Lt. Rick Johnson said Monday.


Johnson said Barnett received a single puncture wound. Doctors at Washington County Hospital performed surgery Sunday night, and he was listed in fair condition Monday.

David Allen Banzhoff Jr., 23, Barnett's brother-in-law, was being held Monday on $165,000 bond at the Washington County Detention Center. Banzhoff, who has the same address as Barnett, was charged with attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault, second-degree assault and reckless endangerment.

Banzhoff's fiancee and his sister apparently had been arguing at the apartment he shared with Barnett, Johnson said.

According to allegations in charging documents filed in Washington County District Court, Banzhoff went upstairs to his bedroom and retrieved a Japanese-style sword with a blade approximately 30 inches long.

When Banzhoff came downstairs with the sword, arguing continued, and Banzhoff said that if "anyone touched his fiancee that he would cut their hands off," police alleged in court papers.

Johnson alleged that an unarmed Barnett approached Banzhoff, and Banzhoff lunged at Barnett with the sword.

Police took Banzhoff into custody without incident, Johnson said.

At a bail review hearing Monday afternoon, District Judge Ralph H. France reduced Banzhoff's initial bond of $300,000 to $165,000, after Banzhoff's lawyer explained that his client was a lifelong resident of Washington County, and apparently had no criminal background.

Staff writer Brian Shappell contributed to this story.

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