Sacramento police Wednesday announced the arrest of a man in the stabbing last month of U.S. Airman Spencer Stone, one of three Americans who helped thwart an attack on a Paris-bound train in August.
Stone, 23, was stabbed multiple times during a street fight in the predawn hours of Oct. 8 after he and his friends had left a popular club. At the time, Sacramento police described the incident as a “very unfortunate altercation between two groups of folks who were enjoying the nightlife.”
Sacramento police Chief Sam Somers said officers secured a warrant Tuesday and on Wednesday morning arrested James Tran, 28, during a traffic stop near his home in Elk Grove. The Sacramento County district attorney’s office has decided to file a charge of attempted murder against Tran, who Somers said has a record of past felonies.
Somers said the investigation was developed through tips as well as footage from security cameras in the area.
Video showed Stone and others squared off against several other individuals. Stone punched one man to the ground, and as he did, another man appeared to stab him several times in the chest.
Somers said the fight began when one group of revelers became upset that they were recorded by someone in another group with a smartphone video camera. He said Tran has a record of past felonies and had “some affiliation with a gang, but that’s not connected to this matter.” He said Tran and his friends were not believed to have been aware of Stone’s public stature.
According to an account by Stone’s brother posted on an online fundraising site, Stone underwent emergency open heart surgery to close wounds to his lungs, liver and heart. He was released from a Sacramento hospital a week later.
In August, Stone and his childhood friends, Alek Skarlatos and Anthony Sadler, tackled a gunman with an AK-47 aboard a high-speed train traveling from Amsterdam to Paris. They and a British businessman hogtied the gunman, and Stone, trained as a paramedic, staunched the flow of blood from the neck of an injured passenger.
A spokeswoman for the district attorney said Tran was scheduled to be arraigned on Friday.