Tarpon Springs, Florida -- A patron at a convenience store stepped up in a big way to help police catch a man who attacked a fellow homeless man with the handle of an ax Wednesday afternoon.
Mark Tucker told Tarpon Springs police officers he saw James Knott come up behind Brian Kennedy with a 3-foot wooden ax handle in his hands and hit the man in the head as he sat on the edge of the sidewalk in front of the EZ Stop & Shop on S Walton Avenue.
Kennedy fell forward and Tucker said Knott hit him again in an overhead motion. Knott then dropped the handle and fled on foot. Tucker ran after him and caught him near the back of Florida National Bank, just east of the store, where he held him on the ground until police arrived.
Kennedy, 55, was taken to Bayonet Hospital with serious, possibly life threatening injuries.
After his arrest, police say Knott admitted to attacking Kennedy in self defense after Kennedy had pulled a box cutter on him earlier in the day. Officers say they did not find a box cutter on Kennedy or at the scene and no one reported seeing one at anytime during the attack. Police say alcohol appeared to be a factor in the incident.
Knott, 49, has been charged with Attempted Murder.