An out-of-state man reportedly visiting family in Washington County has been charged after a stabbing of a family member last month.
Jason Ridgley, 21, of Arkansas, was charged Sept. 25 with first-degree assault, armed criminal action, first-degree degree tampering, and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to a probable cause statement by Det. Ethan Haworth of the Washington County Sheriff's Office, on Aug. 18, Ridgley was at a residence on Prices Trail in Potosi with his wife and three other family members. Ridgley's wife had reportedly gotten into a verbal argument with one of the female family members over food being cooked in the residence.
Ridgley and his wife left the residence after the argument ensued, according to the statement, however, Ridgley's wife reported that he had returned to the residence to retrieve his phone charger.
According to the statement, during the time Ridgley was retrieving his phone charger, the family member who was previously involved in the argument with his wife was stabbed underneath her breast with a knife.
The injured woman was treated for her injuries at Missouri Baptist Hospital in Sullivan and the detective states that when he spoke with the victim, she told him that she didn’t know who stabbed her.
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Ridgley was interviewed at the Washington County Sheriff's Office multiple times in reference to the incident. During one of those interviews, Cpl. V. Jablonowski asked Ridgley if he had stabbed the woman and he reportedly stated, “yeah,” while nodding his head in an up-and-down motion, according to the statement. Jablonowski stated in response to the admission, “did you?” to which Ridgley replied, “no I did not.”
Haworth conducted an interview with Ridgley's wife to find out what she had seen or heard. During the interview, the detective advised the woman that her husband had stated that he did stab the family member. His wife then stated that, while they were driving to Potosi, Ridgley was able to provide her with a small knife. She also stated that her husband refused to take her to see the other family members, and she told the detective that she knew the woman with whom she had argued was hurt.
Ridgley was located at the Super 8 Motel in Potosi by Lt. Randall Martin, where he was reportedly in possession of a stolen vehicle identified as a 1997 Toyota Camry LE/ELE. Ridgley and his wife are from Arkansas, the state from which the vehicle was reportedly stolen. While searching the stolen vehicle, arresting officers discovered Ridgley had a glass pipe commonly used to smoke methamphetamine. During an interview with Haworth, Ridgley admitted to the detective that the pipe belonged to him.
Ridgley is currently being held at the Washington County Jail on a $25,000 cash or surety bond.
If convicted of the charges, the man could face up to life in prison.