Walker fights off armed Centennial Trail attack


by KREM.com


Posted on May 8, 2013 at 2:22 PM

Updated Wednesday, May 8 at 6:41 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. -- Two men recovered early Wednesday after a late-night stabbing along the Spokane River in Downtown Spokane.

Police said transient, Scott McGuire came up behind another man walking along the Centennial Trail on the north side of the river on North River Drive.  Investigators said the McGuire slashed the back of the Avery Latham’s neck in what they call a random attack.

The 21-year-old was on his way home after hanging out with friends in Downtown.

“I'm walking home from a really long day, and I hear a slight footstep right behind me, and I turn my head and I get slashed full strength,” said Latham.

Avery was slashed across the back of his entire neck.  It took 16 stitches to patch him according to authorities. Latham described the weapon as a steak knife.

Latham said that is when his martial arts training kicked into full gear.

“I turn around, I grab both of his hands and I wrestled him to the ground,” said Latham, “get the knife from him and punched him in the face.”

He held McGuire in a chock hold until the cops arrived on the scene according to witnesses. A woman passing by called police.

Latham’s said he hopes others learn from the attack and are more aware of their surroundings.

“If I hadn't turned my head, I think I'd be dead right now,” said Latham.

He said his attack never said a word.

 “I didn't even know he was there until he was right behind me. That's how quiet he was. He had obviously snuck around before,” added Latham.

The suspect faces 1st Degree Assault charges.