Gardner man gets up to 8 years for drug deal stabbing

WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts man convicted of fatally stabbing one man and seriously injuring another during an attempted drug robbery has been sentenced to up to eight years in prison.

The Telegram & Gazette reports that 23-year-old Francis Arbolay, of Gardner, was sentenced Monday. He had originally been charged with first-degree murder in the January 2016 stabbing death of 23-year-old Christopher Starkweather in Gardner. He was also charged with armed assault with intent to murder in the non-fatal stabbing of another man, and with assaulting a third man.

The stabbings took place after Starkweather came up with a plan to rob Arbolay of crack cocaine he was selling by passing off a $5 bill as a $100 bill during a pre-arranged drug deal.

Arbolay pleaded guilty Sept. 5 to manslaughter in Starkweather’s death.

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