Monday, July 15, 2013
21-year-old Doylestown man charged with attempted murder in stabbing of homeless man
Posted: Friday, July 5, 2013
After celebrating his 21st birthday Tuesday, a Doylestown man allegedly stabbed a 71-year-old homeless man more than 70 times, leaving him unconscious and bleeding near the Doylestown Train Station.
Police said Dale "Bugsy" Wakefield's sister turned him in after he called her, said he may have killed a man and that he planned to flee to North Dakota.
Wakefield got as far as Baltimore, where he was arrested Thursday. He is charged in a Bucks County warrant with attempted murder, aggravated assault and possessing an instrument of crime, District Attorney David Heckler said.
The man he allegedly stabbed, George Mohr, a homeless U.S. Army veteran and Villanova graduate, remains in critical condition at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia.
Mohr was found lying on South Clinton Street — a block south from the apartment where Wakefield was staying — in front of a bus kiosk near the Doylestown train station about 2:45 a.m. on Wednesday, police said.
At first, authorities thought he’d been struck by a train or car, but realized he sustained several blows to his head and numerous stab wounds. Investigators said they believe Mohr took the train from Philadelphia to Doylestown on Tuesday.
When police arrived at the scene, they found Mohr unresponsive, unconscious and “bleeding profusely” from his head, chest and face, according to a probable cause affidavit. He was flown to Temple University Hospital.
“We are very concerned that Mr. Mohr may not survive his injuries and this may become a murder case,” Heckler said.
A Temple doctor told police that Mohr had multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma to the head that resulted in numerous facial fractures and brain injury, according to the affidavit.
Heckler said the emergency communications department quickly set up an emergency tip line because authorities believed members of the community might have seen or heard something. In particular, Heckler said, investigators believed Mohr’s attacker would have blood spatter on himself and may have sustained cuts to his hands.
Wendy Wakefield, Dale's sister, called that line early Thursday morning and said her brother -- who stays at her apartment in the unit block of South Clinton Street — had called her Wednesday and told her he was in trouble, according to court documents.
He had stabbed someone and “may have killed him,” the affidavit said.
In subsequent conversations, Wakefield told his sister that he stabbed someone at the Doylestown Train Station and that he still had the pocket knife he used in the attack, but his bloody clothes and shoes were still in the apartment. His sister said that she had not been to the South Clinton Street apartment in two weeks, police said.
Dale Wakefield also told his sister he wanted to flee to North Dakota, but that he was currently at a hotel in Baltimore.
Several hours later, Baltimore Police executed a search warrant at Room 524 of the Mount Vernon Hotel where they arrested Wakefield and recovered a pocketknife. Wakefield remains in custody in Baltimore pending an extradition hearing.
Heckler said that investigators have information that others were with Wakefield that night and it is unclear if anyone was still with him at the time of the stabbing. He said that drinking on his 21st birthday is a violation of Wakefield’s probation and, at least initially, Baltimore authorities held Wakefield on a probation violation while authorities in Bucks County filed the attempted murder warrant against him.
Wakefield has a history of violent crime, according to Carbon County court records. He pleaded guilty earlier this year to making terroristic threats and simple assault stemming from an incident in September. He was sentenced to seven to 23 months in prison in March and ordered to have a psychiatric evaluation within 30 days of release and undergo anger management counseling.
Wakefield pleaded guilty to escaping custody in 2012 and was placed on probation. He also previously pleaded guilty to DUI and harassment.
Heckler said investigators will serve a search warrant at the apartment on South Clinton Street.
Mohr's last known address was in Phoenix, Ariz., and authorities said he’s been known to visit Doylestown in warm weather. Heckler said courthouse security has previously asked him not to sleep in an area adjacent to the domestic relations court building. Authorities said they do not know of any friends or family he has in the area.
Court records indicate Mohr was charged with harassment in 2011 by Doylestown police, but it is unclear what the resolution of that case was.
Authorities believe Mohr occasionally slept on a bench at the train station. Heckler said authorities have been in contact with Mohr’s family, some of whom are currently at the hospital.