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Bail maintained in head stabbing case

The Maui News

WAILUKU — A homeless man remained in jail Thursday after being charged with stabbing another man last week in Lahaina after an argument over a missing sleeping bag.

Ralph Guarino, 51, pleaded not guilty to attempted first-degree assault and second-degree assault.

During a 2nd Circuit Court hearing Thursday, he asked to have his bail lowered from $100,000 or to be released on supervision.

Except for a misdemeanor conviction, Guarino has had no criminal record while on Maui for about five and a half years, said defense attorney Kristin Coccaro.

Deputy Prosecutor Annalisa Bernard Lee opposed any bail reduction.

She said Guarino and the victim allegedly got into an argument at 9:14 a.m. Feb. 4 over a missing sleeping bag from a few days earlier. Guarino allegedly chased the victim into the ABC Store at 666 Front St., pulled out a knife and stabbed him on the back of his head, Bernard Lee said.

After the victim fell to the ground, Guarino “got on top of the victim and continued to hit him,” she said.

Guarino fled on a bicycle.

The victim suffered a laceration to his head and puncture wounds to his head and arm, Bernard Lee said.

“We do consider the defendant to be a danger in the community,” she said.

As she was speaking, Guarino said, “Oh, please.”

Judge Peter Cahill maintained Guarino’s bail at $100,000.

An April 27 trial is set for Guarino.