The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

January 4, 2013

Suspect in stabbing claimed to have been asleep

By Jeff Lehr

JOPLIN, Mo. — A suspect charged with stabbing another man early Thursday morning initially told police that he was sleeping at the time and knew nothing about the assault.

Artilius Jordan, 42, is charged with first-degree assault and armed criminal action in the stabbing of Stanley Watkins, 35, of Joplin.

According to a probable-cause affidavit, Watkins was stabbed in his shoulder and abdomen and also suffered a cut to his face in an altercation at 809 S. Pennsylvania Ave. An officer called to the address regarding a disturbance at 5:14 a.m. Thursday located Watkins sitting on a stairway inside the four-plex apartment building.

Watkins had blood on his face, torso and pant legs and told the officer that he had been stabbed by a man named “Art,” who recently moved in to Apartment 1 at the address. The stabbing victim was taken to Freeman Hospital West, where he remains in critical condition.

The affidavit states that Jordan came to the door of Apartment 1 and told the officer that he had been sleeping and knew nothing about any assault. But the officer observed blood on his hands and pants and spotted what appeared to be a bloody pillowcase just inside the doorway of the apartment, according to the affidavit. Jordan was taken into custody at that point and a search warrant was obtained for the apartment.

Lt. Brian Lewis of the Joplin Police Department said on Friday that, to his knowledge, the weapon used in the stabbing has yet to be recovered. Jordan is being held at the Joplin City Jail on a $10,000 bond.