UPDATE 5:15 p.m. Tuesday: The victim in Friday night's stabbing has been identified as Stephen Christopher Lynch, according to the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office. Lynch was was treated at Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center. He was released on Monday, said hospital spokesman Ron Yukelson.
The 24-year-old San Luis Obispo man who was stabbed multiple times after a 17-year-old broke into his home late Friday night was no longer in critical condition at a local hospital, a county sheriff’s official said Monday.
Sheriff’s officials have not released the man’s name, nor have they identified the teen suspect, because he is a minor.
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But they disclosed more information about the attack, which Cmdr. Aaron Nix described as a crime of opportunity and an interrupted burglary.
The victim and suspect didn’t know each other, he said. The 24-year-old was asleep in a home on Hidden Springs Road, off of Buckley Road south of the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport, when the teen entered the home through the garage, arming himself with some kind of pocket knife he found there, Nix said.
The teen then started burglarizing the home, even entering the victim’s bedroom to pluck his cell phone from a nightstand, accordng to authorities. The suspect also reportedly took the victim’s wallet, some clothing and other personal belongings.
The victim, hearing some noise and knowing his roommates were out of town, woke up and went to investigate the cause.
That’s when the teen attacked, stabbing the man multiple times in his head, neck and back, Nix said.
“A couple of the wounds were life-threatening,” he said. “He lost a lot of blood.”
The teen reportedly left in the victim’s car. The man didn’t have a landline to call for help, so he walked to a neighbor’s for assistance. The area is rural and Nix estimated the victim walked about a half mile before he reached the neighbor’s home. Sheriff’s officials received a 911 call at 11:48 p.m.
The man was taken to an undisclosed hospital, where he remains. Officials were able to find the suspect somewhere off Highway 41 between Cholame and Kettleman City by tracing the victim’s cell phone to the location.
The victim was also able to give deputies a meticulous account of what happened, Nix said.
The teen was walking a short distance from the victim’s stolen vehicle. He was arrested without incident by Kings County sheriff’s deputies, transported back to San Luis Obispo County and booked into the Juvenile Services Center on suspicion of attempted murder and burglary.
“This appears to be an isolated incident,” Nix said. “There did not appear to be a pre-existing motive for the attack.”