KEARNEY, Neb. -- The Ohio man accused of stabbing an Elm Creek man near Odessa in April, has been deemed competent to stand trial.
Caleb McDonald, 18, was in Buffalo County court Wednesday July 8 where lawyers presented the judge with evidence of the evaluation done to determine whether he was competent or not. McDonald is accused of stabbing 38-year-old John Quintana of Elm Creek seven to ten times in the head, stomach and torso near Odessa in April. Quintana says McDonald followed him in his car and then stabbed Quintana with a knife after he exited the vehicle.
Quintana received non-life threatening injuries. McDonald is currently being held in the Buffalo County Jail.
Captain Bob Anderson of the Buffalo County Sheriff's Office confirmed to NBC Nebraska Monday afternoon that it was 18-year-old Caleb McDonald of Ohio who stabbed an Elm Creek man multiple times on Friday afternoon near Odessa.
Officials say 38-year-old John Quintana of Elm Creek seven to ten times in the head, stomach and torso near Odessa Friday.
According to Capt. Bob Anderson of the Buffalo County Sheriff's Office, a call came in around 1 p.m. reporting the stabbing, which was first witnessed by a local store owner.
"The Ohio man, allegedly, followed the Elm Creek man to Odessa. They pulled off of the roadway, they exited their cars, they approached each other to say something and at that point, we believe, the Ohio man brandished a knife and assaulted the man from Elm Creek," said Capt. Anderson
Lucuas Gerdes, the owner of Odessa Furniture, was on his way back from lunch when he drove upon an altercation between two men taking place in front of his store location on Odessa Road.
He immediately ran into his store to grab duct tape and a firearm to assist Quintana against the suspect.
McDonald appeared in Buffalo County Court Monday for a bond hearing, where he was charged with first degree assault, possessing a deadly weapon while committing a felony and issuing terroristic threats.
Bond is set at $500,000 cash or surety for McDonald, who remains lodged in Buffalo County jail. A preliminary hearing is now set for April 27 at 10 a.m. in Buffalo County Court.
John Quintana has been identified as a contracted employee of the Kearney Hub newspaper, acting as a third-party courier for the local business.
Julie Speirs, Publisher & President of the Kearney Hub, told NBC Nebraska that while he is not a direct employee of the paper, they are very concerned about his health and well being. She also said their thoughts are with Quintana and his family at this time.
Locals said they were shocked and scared when they heard of what happened.
"We got our kids running around and we don't want to have to worry about them with anyone," said Amanda Ellis, who has lived in Odessa for 4 years.
For Ellis, and many other residents of the town of 130 according to a recent census, the worst part was not knowing if the suspect was in custody or still on the run.
"Our brother in law, that's what he was looking for when he drove by and told us, he was looking for the guy. But then when we heard that he had been caught, we all kind of chilled out a little," said Ellis.
Gerdes told NBC Nebraska, this wasn't how he expected his Easter weekend to start.
"It's Good Friday and I was just expecting a regular old Friday," he said with a chuckle. "Definitely not a normal thing to have happen on a Friday in Odessa, Nebraska."