Bloody in Midtown: Interview with Sacramento stabbing victim

Three Sacramento musicians stabbed for wearing skinny jeans

A fundraiser for the stabbing victims, called “#iwearskinnyjeans,” is Saturday, June 27, at 10 p.m. at Pour House, 1910 Q Street. Donations go to the victims. Performances by James Cavern, Carly DuHain and more. (The organizers urge all attendees to wear their favorite skinny jeans, of course.)

Fishing, swimming in the river, barbecue, drinks—local musician Blake Abbey and his friends were having a classic summertime Sunday in Sacramento. That is, until he ended up stabbed and bleeding-out on the streets of Midtown just before midnight.

“The knife went all the way through my arm,” Abbey told SN&R from his hospital bed at UC Davis Medical Center. “He stuck it all the way through my arm, coast to coast.”

This all happened as Abbey and his musician buddies were minding their own business, walking to The Press Club on 21st Street. The four men—including Abbey’s brother, Bradley, and two members of the hugely popular local hardcore rock troupe Slaves, Alex Lyman and Wes Richmond—were goofing around, walking arm in arm, until they stopped near O Street, because they heard two guys hollering.

“They start yelling at us, talking shit,” says Abbey, who heads the local band Musical Charis. The men stood near a motorcycle parked in front of Alley Katz and allegedly called Abbey and his friends “faggots,” making fun of their skinny jeans, he says.

And then, “literally within seconds,” one of the men, Timothy Brownell, 25, allegedly brandished a knife.

“The knife was fucking huge,” Abbey remembered, comparing it to a blade you’d see in a Rambo movie.

His brother pleaded for Brownell to drop it. The others begged and yelled, too. But then Brownell allegedly swung it at Slaves guitarist Richmond, slicing him across the stomach. Abbey saw his shirt rip. He saw blood.

Meanwhile, Brownell’s accomplice continued trash-talking at Abbey. “The guy was running his mouth, ’You’re so lucky we don’t have guns, you would’ve been killed by now.’” This was around the time Abbey felt a knife enter his flesh.

“He put the knife through my arm, then pulled it,” he explained. Bloodied and in a panic, he ran toward Press Club, where a woman helped him by grabbing towels and wrapping his arm. Someone else called 911.

On Monday, Abbey was recovering in the hospital, where doctors used seven packets of stitches to zip up his 12-inch-long gash. Lyman was treated for a stab wound near his ribs, which nearly pierced his spleen, according to Abbey, and lacerations on his neck. Richmond has a broken hand and is wearing a hard cast.

Slaves, which boasts 94,000 fans on Facebook, was scheduled to join the Warped Tour this weekend, in addition to headlining Concerts in the Park this Friday night. Both shows will go on, but Richmond will be out of commission for months.

Abbey was supposed to drive the Slaves tour van during the Warped jaunt, but he’s not sure now.

The suspect, Brownell, was arrested after a witness identified him and lead police to his home, where they found illegal firearms. He was charged for those, and for assault with a deadly weapon, but he posted bail and was out by early morning.

Sacramento police are now calling this attack a hate crime, and there is a new warrant out for Brownell’s arrest.

The musicians will recover, but they’re still a bit stunned. “Wish the world could stop hating what they don’t understand,” Lyman wrote on Instagram.