Some Davenport residents on the city’s west side have questions tonight over police response in their neighborhood the night of a brutal stabbing.
John Minch, 22, spent four days in the hospital, his abdomen sliced in half after being stabbed in the front yard of his family’s home on Wilkes Avenue Saturday night.
”My son could have died, they told me if it was a centimeter either direction he could have died”, said Barb Minch.
It happened when the Minch’s were holding a surprise birthday party in their backyard, with parents, kids, and grandparents having a cook-out. Witnesses say an uninvited stranger who lives in the neighborhood angrily interrupted the gathering three different times.
”I walked him back across the alley, and he said I’m going to kill everybody in your ”f-ing” family. I don’t even know this guy at all”, said Ron Minch, the victim’s dad.
The family says they wrapped up the party because they were afraid at that point, the man might come back. As guests were leaving, he did.
”The guy just come across the alley in the dark, took the knife, and put it right in my son’s back”, Minch said. ”I didn’t know he was stabbed until I touched him, my clothes and hands are full of blood, I said John, something’s wrong”, Minch said.
”The worst part was I’m standing there waiting for the ambulance, he’s in his yard screaming, ‘He’s gonna murder me”. He said ‘I killed your son, and I’m going to kill you too.’ ”
Police arrived, and arrested 37-year old Everett Ewoldt, a man who lives nearby, a man with a criminal history, including assaults.
”This guy is running around stabbing people and he’s got a rap sheet a mile long”, said Minch.
But what upsets the family is, at least two other neighbors were allegedly threatened by Ewoldt earlier iin the day, and at least one of them called police. But she says, an officer never came to see her or ask her any questions.
”I dialed 9-1-1, and said he’s threatening to come over and beat me up”, said Sue Siebel, who lives a couple of doors down from the Minches.
”I’m not sure what time it was, but it was well before the stabbing. She said they’d send a police squad and the fire department, because the guy was burning a bunch of stuff in the backyard. The fire department came. No squad though. No police”, Seibel, who is 67 ,said.
Another neighbor says he also heard Ewoldt threaten to kill another neighbor earlier in the day, too. It’s not known if police were called about that. But the Minches and their neighbors want to know why the man’s behavior wasn’t investigated when Siebel called -9-1-1 the first time.
”There are a lot of good people who are cops and they risk their lives everyday for us, but if somebody would have taken the time to come down and investigate, even lock him up for the night, my son wouldn’t have been stabbed”, Minch said.
He says if it’s a stafffing shortage, it should be fixed, and he hopes to address the city council soon.
”If it’s a funding problem we need to fix it”, Minch said.
Seibel says she feels awful about the pain John Minch is going through after the stabbing.
”There would be no stabbing if he’d been taken to jail. That’as a crying shame. That could have been me, that could have been anybody on this block”, Siebel said. ”Quit paying some of those high falutin’ officials and hire more cops!”
John Minch was working 50 to 60 hours a week at a plastics company, and he is praying he can recover in time and keep his job.
”They told me if I can’t come back within 30 days I’ll lose my job. As for Ewoldt, he needs to be prosecuted”, the younger Minch said.
Meanwhile, Ewoldt posted bond and is already back on the streets, living in the same house, and the Minch’s said, he’s already driven by the house with a message.
”The neighbor’s witnessed him do it, he pointed his fingers at me, like he was pulling a trigger, like this. I still feel threatened”, Minch said from the front yard where the stabbing happened.