Homeless man ordered held in Sylvester Park stabbing

Staff writerJuly 22, 2013 

A judge set a homeless man's bail at $250,000 Monday and found probable cause to support an accusation that he stabbed a man in broad daylight during a fight in Sylvester Park July 16.

Daniel Homan, 36, was being held at the Thurston County Jail Monday on suspicion of first-degree assault. Homan is accused in court papers of stabbing a 27-year-old Ralph Turpin on the right side of his torso and on the forearm in Olympia's Sylvester Park about 4:10 p.m. on July 16.

A witness told police he overheard Homan say he stabbed Turpin "over a female and a laptop," court papers state. Turpin told investigators that Homan "ripped some people off and it was taken back from him," according to court papers.

Homan ran to a waiting Intercity Transit bus on Capitol Way after the stabbing. Homan got on the bus, but was then forced off and beaten by a crowd of men from Sylvester Park. Homan was stabbed in the abdomen during a fight with the men who were pursuing him, Washington State Patrol Sgt. Jason Hicks said.

The suspect in Homan's stabbing is still on the loose, Hicks said.

Surveillance footage from an Intercity Transit bus shows Homan getting on the bus, then being attacked after being forced off. Hicks said investigators are trying to identify Homan's attackers, and whomever is responsible for Homan's stabbing.

Initially, the patrol thought Turpin may have stabbed Homan, but court papers released Monday indicate that he is not responsible. According to court papers, a Department of Enterprise Services surveillance camera from Sylvester Park shows Homan's stabbing was committed by an unidentified man. "It is clearly seen that Turpin is in the area of this stabbing, but is not involved in the stabbing of Homan," court papers state.

Hicks said the patrol has set up a tip line at 253-538-3100, and anyone who can help identify those responsible for attacking Homan should call.

Turpin was released from an area hospital last week, but was then arrested on a bail jumping warrant out of California. Turpin was in custody Monday at the Thurston County Jail in connection with the arrest warrant.

Homan was released from the hospital Monday morning and booked into the Thurston County Jail on suspicion of first-degree assault in connection with Turpin's stabbing. Homan appeared in court in a wheelchair during his bail hearing Monday afternoon.

Investigators interviewed Homan at the hospital on Sunday, and he said "I won't admit to or deny stabbing anyone," court papers state. Homan was unable to identify the man who stabbed him, court papers state.

Homan moved to Olympia from California about six months ago, court papers state. He has a prior arrest record out of California, and at the time of his arrest July 16, he had a warrant out of Olympia Municipal Court for a pending misdemeanor assault charge. Last week's stabbing in Sylvester Park has prompted questions about the safety of the park, where a large number of transients and street people congregate. The State Patrol is in charge of the park, because it is owned by the state and is considered part of the Capitol Campus.


Jeremy Pawloski: 360-754-5445 jpawloski@theolympian.com

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