A former Bellevue man who reportedly couldn't remember much about stabbing a relative's best friend when he was "drunk out of his mind" received an 11-month prison term Thursday.
Sandusky resident Paul L. Herriott Jr., 34, was sentenced to one month short of the maximum he could have received for the fifth-degree felony. In mid-September, he pleaded guilty to attempted aggravated assault; a Huron County grand jury had indicted him in March on felonious assault, a second-degree felony.
Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway told the defendant Thursday he's lucky the victim wasn't injured any worse than he could have been since "you were drunk out of your mind."
"Your history is you drink and you do violent things. You have to change. ... You can't drink anymore," the judge said.
Herriott's adult and juvenile charges include domestic violence and multiple drug charges. Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Richard Woodruff said the defendant went to prison for attempted aggravated robbery through Erie County. The conviction is for a June 11, 2005 incident.
About 6 a.m. Jan. 1, Bellevue Hospital staff members treated a 28-year-old Clyde man who came into the emergency room with three stab wounds to his stomach. The Bellevue Police Department investigated the North Buckeye Street incident.
"There are some mitigating circumstances," Huron County Public Defender David Longo said. "He has only the vaguest of memories of what happened."
After receiving stitches at the hospital, the victim was released the next morning. He couldn't remember Herriott's last name at the time. However, police determined Herriott was the attacker after the victim provided the names of two friends.
"This was a New Year's gathering where there was a ridiculous amount of alcohol consumed by all involved," Longo said.
The Clyde victim went to a friend's house and got into an argument with Herriott about 4 a.m. when Herriott grabbed a kitchen knife and stabbed him, police said.
Officers didn't find the victim's Chevrolet Cobalt at the North Buckeye Street residence, but later found the car in the Norfolk Southern railroad yard. Police located Herriott at his then-Bellevue residence and arrested him without incident about seven hours after the victim went to the hospital.
Longo said Herriott first told him he walked to the hospital, but he later said he drove the victim's car to a railroad yard, left it and walked.
Herriott initially denied knowing the victim, but later admitted he went to a bar with the man and two friends.
"He still denied stabbing him. I think alcohol had a little affect on his memory," Detective Eric Burt said earlier.
As Herriott was being placed in a cruiser, officers said they noticed a blood stain on his coat sleeve and then seized it as evidence.
"I believe Mr. Herriott is sorry for all this mess," Longo said at Thursday's sentencing hearing.