Police Blotter: Man stabs neighbor more than a dozen times
A To’hajiilee man is facing federal assault charges for allegedly stabbing a neighbor more than a dozen times. Meredith Yazzie, 49, is currently being held in custody by the U.S. Marshall’s Office in Albuquerque.
The accuser, identified in court records as CW, 27, said he was walking home from a friend’s house on May 25 when he saw Yazzie, whom he recognized as being from his neighborhood, coming toward him. CW said when he attempted to greet him with a hug, Yazzie told him that he had been “talking shit” and pulled out some kind of object and stabbed him several times, causing him to fall to the ground.
CW said he exclaimed, “Stop! Why are you doing this! You are killing me!” Yazzie moved a few feet away and CW said he tried to stand up so he could run away. But before he was able to do this, Yazzie rushed at him and stabbed him several more times.
He managed to get up and started running, only to have Yazzie chase him and stab him several more times, he told police. This time, he said, he started to struggle with Yazzie and managed to force Yazzie to drop the object he was using to stab him with. He said it looked like an ice pick.
CW said he pleaded with Yazzie to leave him alone and Yazzie agreed as long as he could take the stabbing object with him. Yazzie located the object and left on foot. CW said he managed to make it to the road and attempted unsuccessfully to flag down approaching vehicles. Finally one of his relatives came by and they called for an ambulance.
EMS officials, however, refused to come and get him until police arrived so his relative drove CW to the To’hajiilee EMS station. CW was then transported to the University of New Mexico Hospital where he was treated for numerous puncture wounds, a collapsed lung and injuries to his trachea. He underwent surgery to repair his lacerated lung.
On June 8, tribal courts issued an arrest order for Yazzie and three days later police went to a shed Yazzie was living in and knocked. When they identified themselves as police, Yazzie refused to open the door and yelled “I’m not going back!”
Police opened the door and saw Yazzie standing in the corner. He had a gadget in one hand and a screwdriver in the other. He refused to surrender. When he continued to ignore commands to give himself up, police sprayed him but that had no effect and he continued to ignore their commands.
Police notified the FBI of the situation and were told to stand down. About an hour later, an FBI SWAT team and negotiators arrived and took over the scene. Yazzie was told several times to come out and eventually he did. But he was still carrying a hatchet and screwdriver. Yazzie took several steps toward the agents and raised his weapons. At that point, several agents rushed him and managed to subdue him.