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Two face attempted murder charges after stabbing in Largo

LARGO — Police believe a dispute over money was behind a stabbing that led authorities to arrest two men Saturday on attempted murder charges.

The incident happened before 10 p.m. at the Castilian Lake Club Apartments, 11444 137th St. N in Largo. That's when Daniel Medina-Garcia, 29, and Bruce Oakie Barnes, 53, of Pinellas Park confronted the victim about money and other items allegedly owed to Medina-Garcia, authorities said.

According to police reports, Barnes drove Medina-Garcia to the apartment complex where Medina-Garcia — wearing latex gloves and a bandanna over his face — confronted the victim's roommate in front of the building.

Medina-Garcia hit the roommate in the head with a Heineken bottle, police said, then began fighting with the victim.

Neighbors reported seeing both suspects repeatedly kick and punch the victim. Police said Barnes handed Medina-Garcia a knife, which he used to stab the victim multiple times in the chest, puncturing the man's lung.

The man was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries, Largo police spokesman Lt. Mike Loux said.

Authorities said Medina-Garcia admitted to a "physical altercation" with the men but denied striking the roommate with a bottle. Barnes claimed "he was only trying to intervene and stop the fight" between Medina-Garcia and the victim, police said.

Medina-Garcia, who lives in St. Petersburg, also faces charges of aggravated battery and possession of oxycodone. Police said Saturday's arrest violates Barnes' eight-year probation on a 2007 felony case. He also was arrested on a warrant out of Texas.

Both men were being held Sunday at the Pinellas County Jail without bail.

Two face attempted murder charges after stabbing in Largo 10/23/11 [Last modified: Sunday, October 23, 2011 11:33pm]
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