Laramie Homicide Suspect Appears in Court
A man accused of second degree murder in a Laramie stabbing incident has made his initial appearance in court. 66-year-old Timothy R. Harnden is accused of stabbing 44-year-old Paul Hamilton to death on Sunday.
The Laramie P.D. responded to a call just after 11:30 pm on May 19th on the 400 block of North 7th St, in Laramie. Police say they arrived on scene to find Hamilton without a pulse suffering from an apparent stab wound, he was later pronounced dead at Ivinson Memorial Hospital.
Investigators learned that Hamilton had been involved in an altercation with Harnden just before the stabbing. During that confrontation, police affidavits say, Harnden stabbed Hamilton in the chest with a knife.
The affidavit goes on to say that Harnden said, during a police interview, that the stabbing was accidental, and that he had attempted to apply pressure to the stab wound until 9-11 was called. A witness on scene, however, claimed that Harnden did not attempt to render medical aid to Hamilton. Further the affidavit says that an examination of the body showed Hamilton’s stab wounds were not consistent with an accidental stabbing.
Harnden appeared in Albany County Circuit Court Wednesday morning, wearing a black and gray jail jumpsuit and shackles. During the appearance Harnden was notified of his rights and was read the official charge against him of Murder in the Second Degree.
Whoever purposely and maliciously, but without premeditation, kills any human being is guilty of murder in the second degree, and shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for any term not less than twenty (20) years, or during life.
-Wyoming State Statute 6-2-104
Laramie defense attorney, Vaughn Neubauer, represented Harnden during the hearing. On the subject of bond, Neubauer said that Harnden was a candidate for a signature bond as he has been a resident of the city for 66 years, is a retiree, has “rock solid” ties to the community and had received phone calls of support form some community members at Neubauer’s office.
Joshua Merseal, Prosecuting Attorney for Albany County, argued against a signature bond saying that the case represented an act of violence because of unrequited attraction the suspect had for the victim’s wife. He further said that investigators had found a substance suspected to be methamphetamine in Harnden’s home. Because of these reasons Merseal said that Harnden represented a threat to the community and suggested a cash only bond.
Circuit Court Judge Robert A. Castor said that the subject of bond would be considered at a hearing later this week.
A preliminary hearing to ascertain if there is enough evidence to bind the case over to District Court has been scheduled for the end of the month.