HOLLIDAYSBURG - A Blair County jury took less than 30 minutes to acquit an Altoona man of a charge that he made a false report to police when officers contend he said his girlfriend stabbed him during an argument.
Altoona police went to Marvin Jackson's apartment on the 1200 block of 14th Avenue on Jan. 18, in response to a report of a cut on the hand.
Police maintain that when they arrived, Jackson indicated that his longtime girlfriend had stabbed him during an argument.
The girlfriend was charged with simple assault and harassment and was taken to Blair County Prison.
But, according to Jackson's attorney, Assistant Public Defender Dave Beyer, Jackson stated almost from the beginning that he never said the girlfriend stabbed him, and it was his insistence at a preliminary hearing a few days later that led police to dismiss charges against the girlfriend and charge Jackson with making false reports to law enforcement.
Jackson decided this week to take his case before a jury of seven women and five men.
The girlfriend took the stand and told the jury what occurred on the afternoon of Jan. 18.
She and Jackson were arguing, she testified, saying, "Mr. Jackson was aggravated with what I was saying."
There was a knife on the table in the living room, and Jackson picked up the knife and brought it down on a table.
As she explained, his hand slipped off the handle of the knife and slid down the blade, inflicting a bad cut.
He began to bleed profusely and called an ambulance.
The girlfriend went back to her apartment at that point.
Police began questioning Jackson and maintain that he told them she cut him, but, as both sides agreed, Jackson called the girlfriend while police were in her bedroom at her apartment to arrest her. He was on a speaker phone, and the arresting officers heard him say he never accused her of stabbing him.
Officers still arrested her, with Officer Matt McMurray maintaining Jackson admitted to him that he told a false story, noting he was upset because of the argument and because he was confused due to the loss of blood.
Senior Judge Hiram A. Carpenter presided over the trial which lasted five hours.
Mirror Staff Writer Phil Ray is at 946-7468.