Fight between friends leads to fatal stabbing

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November 28, 2006

An Augusta man was stabbed to death in a part of town investigators call a hotspot for crime: south Augusta, at the Augusta Super Inn on Gordon Highway.

Investigators say it all started late last night as a fight between two friends. Then neighbors woke up to the sounds of screaming.

One woman says what she witnessed next is giving her nightmares.

Investigators say after a door flew open at the Augusta Super Inn, Leonard Anthony, Jr. ended up down the hall, where the fight with Johnny Dunn began.

Alice Jones says she heard the whole thing.

"He was like, 'I thought we was friends. I didn't realize things were that bad between us'," she told News 12.

Then the fight moved behind closed doors, where investigators say Anthony punched Dunn in the face over and over again.

That's when investigators say things got really bad. The fight ended when Dunn grabbed a steak knife, reached around Anthony, and stabbed him repeatedly.

In many cases, stabbing someone in the back wouldn't be considered self-defense, but Sgt. Calvin Chew says they believe it could be in this case, if Dunn believed his life was in danger.

"You're doing everything to stop the threat, and you're doing what's reasonable, then that's considered self-defense," he said.

But according to official records, many acts of aggression at this address are not self-defense. Of the roughly 150 crimes reported this year at this address, most were some type of violence.

Deputies say that's possibly because lots of bars and nightclubs surround the rooms, bringing late night trouble to the area.

"It was terrible," Alice said. "I threw up all night because I couldn't sleep. I stayed awake all night."

Alice says the argument was over a woman, but investigators haven't found an official cause.

Investigators don't plan to arrest the suspect, but they're still calling this a murder investigation. When acts of violence lead to a death, the sheriff's office investigates it as if it were a murder.

The district attorney's office will look at the facts and decide if Johnny Dunn should face criminal charges. That decision should come later this week.