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Holiday neighbor charged in 2-by-4 attack on blind man


Neighbor charged in attack on blind man

On Monday evening on Viceroy Lane, a legally blind man had his radio cranked up while using a leaf blower to clean his driveway. A neighbor, James Stewart, 53, marched over to his house to tell him to turn it down, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

The leaf-blowing man, Robert Lee Wade, 49, said no and went back to his driveway and his music.

So Stewart, a carpenter by trade, went back to his house and fished out a 2-by-4 plank from a wood pile, authorities say. He went back to Wade, who stood at the end of his driveway near his white picket fence, and cracked him on the head, the Sheriff's Office said.

Wade fell, according to a witness, and moaned on the ground. Stewart walked back to his house, placed the wood back on the pile and waited for the law to come, according to a report.

"Justice has been served," Stewart said to deputies who arrived.

The report says deputies found Wade's blue baseball cap and the leaf blower near a pool of blood on the driveway. Wade was transported to Community Hospital and needed 12 staples to close the wound on his head, authorities said. The report says Stewart told deputies he had been to Wade's home 50 to 60 times because of noise complaints.

Wade told authorities he couldn't see the weapon, as he is legally blind, but identified Stewart from his voice. Witnesses told deputies it was a wood plank. Stewart admitted to using it to batter Wade, according to the report.

Stewart is charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and is being held at the Land O'Lakes jail in lieu of $10,000 bail.

Holiday neighbor charged in 2-by-4 attack on blind man 04/01/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 1, 2009 9:10pm]
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