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Monday, May 27, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Arrest Made in Stabbing|of Heroic Airman

SACRAMENTO (CN) - Sacramento police Wednesday arrested a man suspected of stabbing one of the U.S. military heroes who foiled a terrorist attack on a French train this summer, and charged him with attempted murder.

U.S. airman Spencer Stone, 23, decked and throttled a would-be terrorist on a French train in August and disarmed him of an AK-47 while two friends beat the man senseless. Stone was stabbed during that incident and nearly lost a thumb. All three men were invited to meet with the French president after foiling the attack.

Then on Oct. 8, Stone was stabbed repeatedly during a fight with a group of men outside a popular Sacramento nightclub.

James Tran, 28, was arrested during a traffic stop Wednesday near his home in Elk Grove. He has prior arrests for weapons and drug charges, police said.

Stone suffered life-threatening injuries during the October fight and was rushed to UC Davis Medical Center before being released a week later. Surveillance video from a nearby market captured Stone fighting off several attackers before being stabbed in the middle of an intersection.

"During that physical fight, Mr. Tran circled behind Mr. Stone and stabbed him multiple times in the back," Sacramento Police Chief Sam Somers Jr. said Wednesday.

The Air Force last week promoted Stone to staff sergeant in recognition of his efforts on the Paris-bound train. Stone and his friends have been hailed as national heroes and recognized by President Barack Obama and California Gov. Jerry Brown, among others.

Somers said Tran was identified through public tips, and that investigators obtained a warrant for his arrest Tuesday. Tran is to be arraigned in Friday on a charge of attempted murder. He was booked in Sacramento County jail.

Along with a prior felony charge, Tran has gang affiliations and could face additional charges, Somers said.

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