WINCHESTER, MASS. (WHDH) - A man accused of fatally stabbing a woman at the Winchester Public Library before attacking an elderly intervener back in February has been indicted by a Middlesex Superior Court grand jury.
Jeffrey Yao, 24, of Winchester, was indicted Thursday on the charges of murder, armed assault with intent to murder a person over the age of 60 and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon on a person over the age of 60, the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office announced.
Yao was denied bail at his arraignment in Middlesex Superior Court Friday morning.
Prosecutors say Yao approached 22-year-old Deane Kenny Stryker from behind in the Winchester Public Library’s reading room on Feb. 24, where he stabbed her as many as 20 times with a 10-inch hunting knife.
Stryker managed to get up and ran towards the door but Yao followed her and continued attacking, prosecutors added. He then allegedly stabbed 77-year-old Lester Taber as he tried to intervene.
Styker was taken to a nearby hospital where she was pronounced dead. Taber, who suffered an upper arm stab wound, was also transported to the hospital and later released.
Yao’s attorney, J.W. Carney Jr., says his client suffers from a “very serious mental illness.”
“This case remains one of the most tragic cases I’ve been involved in my 40 years as an attorney,” he said. “It shows the extreme difficulty faced by parents whose child has a very serious mental illness as Jeffrey Yao does.”
Yao, who does not recall the incident, has expressed remorse for what he has been told happened. He is currently undergoing mental health treatment in prison.
The case is slated to return to court on Oct. 22.
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