A suspect in Arizona behind bars for allegedly stabbing a man to death in an apartment claimed he feared for his life and acted out of self-defense, authorities said.
Around 2 p.m. on Oct. 15, police in Phoenix said officers responding to the report of a stabbing made contact with Dassise LaBamba, 34, and the unidentified 36-year-old male victim, AZ Family reported.
According to court documents obtained by AZ Family, LaBamba claimed he was invited to stay with the man, but the man was “controlling” and the two had been arguing for hours.
LaBamba alleged the man told him he needed to leave the residence but “if he respected him and his rules” he could stay at the apartment, documents state.
LaBamba claimed he gathered his possessions — including a knife and gun — and was putting his shoes on when the man allegedly ran at him. LaBamba said he feared for his life and thought the man was attempting to grab his machete, so he allegedly stabbed the victim to protect himself, according to the documents.
A friend and neighbor of the victim later told police he heard the victim tell LaBamba to leave followed by the sound of glass breaking and a person saying, “You’re stabbing me,” the court papers claim.
The stabbing victim was transported to a local hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
LaBamba was charged with second-degree murder. He was being held on a $1 million bond at the Fourth Avenue jail.
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