State Hospital patient charged with attempted murder

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JAMESTOWN, N.D. (AP) — A patient at the North Dakota State Hospital in Jamestown is charged with attempted murder after allegedly attacking a staff member.

32-year-old Jason Benefiel also faces two felony counts of aggravated assault for last week’s incident. A preliminary hearing is set for May 15.

Court documents say the victim told officers that she was cleaning the bathrooms when the assailant put his arm around her neck, tried to choke her and dragged her down a hallway.

The staffer says she remembers the man hitting her and the next thing she recalled was opening her eyes to see staff around her. Documents say the victim suffered two large lacerations to her face and a fractured septum.

Defense attorney Scott Sandness did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

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