Man charged with knife attack

An Altoona man faces charges after an alleged attack with a knife.

Robert P. Merlini, 67, no fixed address, was arrested Thursday night by Altoona police after Merlini allegedly grabbed a kitchen knife and attacked a man during an argument at a home on the 100 block of East Fourth Avenue.

According to police, Merlini grabbed the knife, raised it above his head and stepped forward as if he was going to stab the man, yelling, “I’ll [expletive deleted] kill you, you punk.”

The man managed to wrestle the knife from Merlini as 911 was called, police noted.

Altoona police officers arrived at the home at about 8:20 p.m. to find Merlini walking out of the house, his pants around his ankles. Police noted Merlini appeared drunk, smelled of alcohol and was shouting obscenities. The knife, police said, was found in the living room.

Merlini was booked on aggravated assault and related charges and lodged in Blair County Prison in lieu of $7,500 cash bail.

A preliminary hearing is slated for Wednesday at Central Court before Magisterial District Judge Jeffrey Auker.