Plea deal reached in Hagerstown stabbing after victim dies from something else

A Hagerstown man was sentenced to time served Tuesday afternoon as part of a plea deal stemming from a stabbing last summer in a convenience store parking lot.

Assistant State's Attorney Beverly Plutnick said during a plea hearing in Washington County Circuit Court that the victim had died, not from injuries from the stabbing but from other health issues. Hunter Draven Parsons had a heart condition and multiple heart surgeries, she said.

Parsons was 24 years old at the time of the Aug. 25 stabbing, Plutnick said after the hearing.

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The Washington County State's Attorney's Office tried to reach Parsons' mother, but she didn't want to talk, Plutnick said.

Under the circumstances, a plea deal was reached with Camara Jones, 31, pleading guilty to second-degree assault, Plutnick said.

Other charges, including attempted second-degree murder, were dismissed as part of the plea deal.

Washington County Circuit Court Judge Brett R. Wilson agreed to the recommended sentence for five years, with all suspended except the 200 days Jones has already served in the Washington County Detention Center. Jones will be on supervised probation for two years.

Wilson said it was an appropriate sentence given the circumstances. In addition to Parsons' "unfortunate" death, Wilson said there was a "question of what truly happened at the time."

What we know about the stabbing in the Sheetz parking lot

If the case had gone to trial, Plutnick said testimony and evidence would have shown Hagerstown Police responded to a physical fight at the Sheetz at 301 E. Washington St. in Hagerstown around 7 p.m. on Aug. 25. Police found Parsons, who had been stabbed in the right side of his torso.

Using city surveillance cameras, police tracked the other person involved, taking Jones into custody.

According to charging documents and Plutnick's recounting of events, Jones told police he saw a male he believed had sexually assaulted his son in the area of South Potomac Street around 1 p.m. that day.

Jones said the man had assaulted him, although Jones acknowledged later in the interview that he assaulted the individual, according to court records.

When police asked Jones about Parsons' stab wounds, Jones denied any involvement. Jones, who previously lived in Washington, D.C., but who has been living with his wife at a South Mulberry Street home for two years, told police that he was on parole and he's not allowed to have a weapon.

When Wilson asked Jones on Tuesday if he was on parole or probation at the time of the August stabbing, Jones said, "Yes." Wilson advised him the plea deal for the stabbing could trigger a violation in his other case.

Assistant Public Defender Stephen Musselman told Wilson the other case is federal.

During Jones' police interview, police showed Jones surveillance footage which showed Jones clenching something that appears to be a knife during the incident, according to charging documents. The video shows Jones swinging his arm in a stabbing motion and the victim attempting to get away.

Police found Jones on the second floor of the South Mulberry Street home after searching the home. He initially gave officers a fake name, but was later identified as Jones, according to charging documents.

Officers also found a blue-and-black folding knife with dried blood on it, according to the complaint.

The victim in the stabbing

A police officer applied a "chest seal" to Parson's stab wound until medics arrived, according to court documents.

Parsons was taken to Meritus Medical Center east of Hagerstown, where medical staff reported he suffered a "deep penetrating wound" to the right torso near his kidney.

He told officers at the hospital that he had encountered the attacker two days before in an alley off East Antietam Street, when the suspect insisted Parsons owed him money.

Parsons said the suspect pulled a knife at that time, but left when an officer went by.

Parsons told police he has never had any interactions with the man and didn't know him.

Parsons had recently undergone open heart surgery and was using a colostomy bag during the incident in the alley and at the Sheetz, according to court documents.

Asked after the hearing about Jones' earlier accusation that he believed he'd seen a male who had assaulted his son, Plutnick said the state's attorney's office didn't have a chance to talk to Parsons before his death.

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Mail: Maryland man gets deal in stabbing after victim's unrelated death