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Man gets nearly 22 years for stabbing former lover with steak knife 17 times

A Vancouver man was sentenced Wednesday to 21 years and eight months in prison for stabbing his former lover 17 times.

Joshua M. Stranz, 29, pleaded guilty to second-degree attempted murder in the March 1 stabbing of Michael Osborne.

Clark County Superior Court Judge Diane Woolard also ordered him to undergo mental health treatment and serve three years' community supervision upon release.

And that won't come for a long time, she added.

"It will be 20 years before you see any good time," she said.

Deputy Prosecutor Jeff Holmes described Stranz as a career criminal with multiple felony and misdemeanor convictions. The stabbing was committed a few months after Stranz had been released from prison for a second-degree robbery conviction, and he was angry at the victim for being instrumental in his conviction, according to court records.

Osborne had called 911 on Stranz after he robbed a fireworks stand in 2006, the deputy prosecutor said.

The two had reunited shortly after Stranz's release last spring and met up at a friend's house at 1633 S.E. 84th Court. They ate cake together. Afterward, Stranz began giving him a back massage, but then started choking, punching and stabbing him with a steak knife, according to the court documents. Stranz then fled.

"The victim was about to die if he hadn't been rushed to the hospital," Holmes told the judge.

Before the sentence was imposed, the 40-year-old victim, described in court papers as once having an intimate relationship with Stranz, told the judge he didn't understand the defendant's anger at him. He said he still lives with pain in his head and side from the stab wounds, as well as emotional trauma.

"I only have one question: Why?," he said. "I feel like I was a true friend to you and we were great companions."

"Each stab felt like it pierced my soul," he added.

Stranz was apprehended the day after the attack at a MAX platform in Portland.

Prosecutors initially charged Stranz with first-degree attempted murder, but agreed to a lesser charge in exchange for Stranz's guilty plea. With second-degree attempted murder, they didn't have to prove premeditated intent.

"That would have been the sole issue at trial," Holmes said.

Defense attorney Matthew Hoff said his client has significant mental health problems and, if the case had gone to trial, he would have pursued an insanity defense.

When asked by the judge if he wished to talk, Stranz simply said he was accepting responsibility for his actions.

"I had the wrong kind of thought process" leading up to the stabbing, he said.

Copyright (c) 2010, The Columbian, Vancouver, Wash.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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