N.C. officer saved stabbed woman's life

Samiha Khanna, Staff Writer
Copyright 2006 The News and Observer

DURHAM -- Just hours after getting out of jail on charges that he had beaten his wife, a man returned to her home and stabbed her nearly to death, police said.

The woman was seriously injured, but on Thursday her condition improved. She was expected to survive.

Police say at 1:12 a.m. Thursday, the 33-year-old woman, who lives in a duplex at 504 Colfax St., called 911 and said her former husband, Robert Parham II, was breaking in.

The 911 call disconnected, and police went to the home, where they learned that the woman and her boyfriend were being held inside against their will.

Three police officers coaxed Parham, 44, into letting the woman's boyfriend go, said Sgt. Robert McLaughlin. But just as Parham released one hostage, he turned to his former wife and stabbed her several times, police said.

As officers grabbed the knife-wielding man, McLaughlin, a former paramedic and firefighter, cleared the woman's airway of blood and kept her breathing and conscious, he said.

"He saved her life," said police spokeswoman Kammie Michael.

The woman's injuries could have been fatal, but by Thursday evening she was expected to survive, Michael said.

Police say Parham has a history of domestic violence against his wife. More than a year ago, the woman had taken out a domestic violence protective order against her estranged husband. But that order had expired, McLaughlin said.

On May 1, police arrested Parham on charges of assault on a female -- his former wife. He was in jail, being held on that charge and additional counts of simple assault, two counts of failing to appear in court and habitual assault when he was released on $11,200 bail Wednesday.

Police say it was only a few hours later that he went to his former wife's home and kicked in the door. He was back in jail later Thursday being held in lieu of $1 million bail. Investigators charged him with attempted first-degree murder, two counts of kidnapping and first-degree burglary. 
May 26, 2006


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