Suspect in domestic stabbings released before 'cooling off' - WSMV News 4

Suspect in domestic stabbings released before 'cooling off'

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A man accused of stabbing his wife and her sister just hours after bonding out of jail earlier this month was released before he completed his so-called cooling-off period.

Donnell Anthony Simpson, 40, faces two counts of attempted murder in the March 12 stabbings in Antioch.

In domestic violence cases, the accused are usually held in jail for at least 12 hours as a cooling-off period, but Simpson got out early.

A judge has the right to waive that cooling-off period, but prosecutors say they're not happy about that decision and believe it put two women's lives in danger.

The man's sister-in-law took the stand in court Friday to describe the alleged attack.

"He jumped on me, then he stabbed me in the shoulder. He just kept on pounding, but the knife was stuck inside the bone. But he still had the handle and so he just kept on because he thought the blade was still in there," Lena Simpson said.

Just 20 minutes after that stabbing, police say Donnell Simpson then headed to his wife's house where they say he stabbed her with a box cutter.

All of this was just hours after he was arrested on charges of aggravated assault and violating an order of protection obtained by his wife.

"There is normally a 12-hour hold that's imposed on people when they're arrested for domestic violence. They can make bond, but they can't make bond until they've been in jail for 12 hours. The purpose of that is to protect the safety of the victims," said Katrin Miller of the 20th Judicial District Attorney's Office.

That 12-hour hold can be waived by the magistrate, and in the case of Donnell Simpson, it apparently was.

"It's a wonder that both of these two women were not killed. And if the magistrate had not waived the 12-hour hold, we might not be here today," Miller said.

Donnell Simpson remains jailed now on a $2 million bond, and the case against Simpson has been bound over to a grand jury.

Both his sister-in-law and his wife are expected to be OK.

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