Motive unclear in Laclede stabbing

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Harp

SANDPOINT — An apparent motive was conspicuously absent after a Washington state man was arrested for stabbing another man and making off with a utility terrain vehicle on Sunday.

Shawn Montgomery Harp is charged with attempted murder, operating a motor vehicle without the owners’ consent and possession of a marijuana. He made an initial appearance in Bonner County Magistrate Court on Monday via video feed from the Bonner County Jail.

Judge Lori Meulenberg set Harp’s bail at $250,575 and appointed a public defender to represent him. Meulenberg also entered an order forbidding Harp from having any contact with the alleged victim.

Sheriff’s deputies were summoned to a home off Campbell Homestead Road in Laclede after receiving a report of a stabbing shortly after 4 p.m. on Sunday. The alleged victim was already en route to Bonner General Health in a private vehicle and Harp had fled the scene in a Polaris Razor UTV, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Witnesses and the alleged victim gave striking similar accounts of the moments leading up to the stabbing. People were enjoying pie and ice cream when Harp suddenly began stabbing the alleged victim.

“(The alleged victim) said Shawn said something to him, then stood up and stabbed him hard in the chest with the steak knife and then again in his back,” Deputy Tim Reynolds noted in the affidavit.

The alleged victim said Harp had taken a seat next to him and had the knife in his hand, which struck him as odd because Harp was not eating anything.

Harp’s wife said her husband made a cryptic remark about whether he was supposed to kill the alleged victim. She also told a deputy that her husband has struggled with drug use and entanglements with the law.

Harp was found at around 6:30 a.m. on Sunday. A deputy on patrol spotted him in a driveway in Laclede, prompting him to bolt away. Harp, however, was found hiding in a chicken coop and was arrested without further incident, court records show. He declined to give a statement to deputies without legal counsel present, the affidavit said.

The alleged victim suffered a punctured lung and likely would have died without immediate medical intervention, court records indicate. The blade of the knife used in the knifing was “severely bent,” according to the affidavit.

Harp is being prosecuted as a persistent violator due to prior felony drug convictions in Kootenai County in 2005 and 2006. If convicted of the charges and the enhancement, Harp could be imprisoned for the rest of his life.

Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at kkinnaird@bonnercountydailybee.com and find him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.

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