He was dressed in white, but his language was blue.
“Go f---k yourself, bitch!” Paul Justin Morgan barked at reporters as he was led into Courtroom No. 7 in provincial court in St. John’s late Wednesday afternoon.
Morgan was arrested earlier in the day in connection with a stabbing in the Kilbride area, where a 44-year-old man and 29-year-old woman were victims of a knife attack.
The male victim was taken to hospital with serious stab wounds and released later in the day, while the woman was examined and treated for superficial wounds.
Morgan, 29 of St. John’s, faces eight charges, including one count of attempting to murder the man.
He’s also been charged with two counts of unlawful confinement, assault causing bodily harm, assault with a weapon, along with two counts of breaching an undertaking and a single count of breaching probation.
Morgan, wearing white prison-issued coveralls, remained standing as Judge Robert Hyslop read the charges aloud in court.
After his brief court appearance, Morgan held in custody and is scheduled to be back in court today.
Morgan is no stranger to the justice system.
Since 2000, he’s racked up a total of 62 convictions, including ones for possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose (2008) assault with a weapon (2004), forcible confinement and assaulting a peace officer (both in 2009), possession of illegal drugs (2009), break and enter (2002), along with multiple breaches of court orders.
His most recent conviction was Jan. 28, when he was sentenced to a 90-day intermittent jail term for theft and breaching court orders.
The longest jail term he got was six months in 2004, when he was convicted of forcible entry, assault with a weapon, uttering threats, theft and court breaches.
The incident Morgan is now charged with committing took place just before 7 a.m. Wednesday.
Police received related calls from two homes, one on Old Petty Harbour Road and the other on Fahey Street.
According to RNC Const. Suzanne FitzGerald, a fight had broken out between two men at the Old Petty Harbour Road house and a woman had run to a neighbour’s home to call for help.
When police arrived at the Fahey Street home, they had a tense situation on their hands.
“When the patrol services officers arrived on the scene, the accused male was outside the residential property. The female was safely inside the property. He was armed at that point with knives, (but) the officers were successful in talking him down,” said FitzGerald.
The male victim was found inside the first home and was suffering from multiple stab wounds. Police have recovered two knives from the crime scene.
What set off the altercation is now part of the investigation and cannot be released, said FitzGerald, but she did indicate that both alcohol and drugs played a factor in this incident.
In a disturbing twist to this story, it has also been revealed that there was a child in the home during the altercation. The police would only say that the child is less than 16 years old.
“That child did not sustain any injuries and, to my knowledge, was not involved, did not witness anything in relation to the altercation. (He or she) was immediately taken from the residence and brought to safety. Child, Youth, And Family Services were notified as well and are following up,” FitzGerald said.
As all this commotion was taking place, many residents of Old Petty Harbour Road were just starting their day — people like William Abbott, who lives a few homes down from where the incident took place.
Abbott awoke to a frightening commotion on his front step. A man dripping blood from a wound was banging on his front door yelling for him for help.
“I was so nervous I didn’t know what it was,” Abbott told The Telegram.
Shocked, he opened the door.
“He was screaming ‘get the ambulance, get the ambulance,’” he said.
The injured man told him he’d been stabbed and that another man had chased a woman out of their house. He also said that he had to go because there was a child in bed at his house and he had to get ready for school.
“I wouldn’t let him go because he was bleeding too much,” said Abbott.
But the man did eventually leave and was taken to hospital.
Even a few hours after the incident took place Abbott was still shaken.
“It was bad — I didn’t know what it was,” he said, adding that he barely new the neighbor who’d come to him for help.