Share This Page

2 stabbed at Springdale high-rise

| Friday, June 27, 2014, 8:15 p.m.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Police investigate a stabbing at the Springdale Manor high-rise along the 500 block of Pittsburgh Street in Springdale on Friday, June 27, 2014.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Springdale Borough and Cheswick police escort Charles Azim, who is suspected of stabbing two woman at the Springdale Manor high-rise along Pittsburgh Street in Springdale. Azim was taken to the New Kensington police station's lockup on Friday, June 27, 2014.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Springdale Borough and Cheswick police escort Charles Azim, the suspect in a stabbing incident at the Springdale Manor high-rise in the 500 block of Pittsburgh Street in Springdale. He was taken into the New Kensington police station's lockup on Friday, June 27, 2014.
Jason Bridge | Valley News Dispatch
Springdale stabbing suspect Charles Azim. Photo taken Friday, June 27, 2014.

Police have taken into custody a 73-year-old resident of the Springdale Manor high-rise in connection with the “serious” stabbings on Friday night of two elderly women and an assault on a third.

Authorities who declined to be identified said the suspect is Charles Azim.

Like the suspect, the women who were wounded are elderly residents.

Officials said both stabbing victims were said to be in serious condition in Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh. A medical helicopter airlifted one patient, who suffered two stab wounds — one in the chest and the other in the abdomen.

Azim was taken into custody soon after the incident.

Neighbors said he had been suffering from ongoing health problems. They said at least one of the women helped care for him.

Neighbors said he and the women had argued frequently, and police had been called in the past.

A third woman, also a resident, reportedly was slapped or punched by the suspect but was not believed to be seriously injured. She was being treated at UPMC St. Margaret hospital near Aspinwall.

The incident happened on the sixth floor of the eight-story building. All residents of that floor were told to leave their apartments.

The apartment building, located in the 500 block of Pittsburgh Street, is operated by the Allegheny County Housing Authority and has more than 90 residential units.

The incident was being investigated by Springdale police, housing authority police and the Allegheny County Police homicide unit. The unit investigates serious crimes even if they don't involve a death.

Lengthy criminal past

Azim has a lengthy criminal record, some involving violence.

• In a case stemming from an incident in May 2000, Azim was sentenced to eight to 16 years in prison.

According to state court records, Azim was convicted in Allegheny County Court of two counts of aggravated assault and one count each of simple assault, reckless endangerment and terroristic threats. The records don't indicate in what municipality the crime occurred, but a Pittsburgh woman has filed a protection from abuse order against him that month.

• Azim was sentenced to five to 10 years in prison for robbery and assault that occurred in Philadelphia in 1977. He wasn't caught until 1983.

• In 1989, he was arrested to drug possession and receiving stolen property. He was sentenced to 1 12 to three years in prison.

• The next year, he was found guilty in Allegheny County of burglary and related charges. He was sentenced to 1 12 to three years in prison.

• Allegheny County court records show that Azim pleaded guilty to an incident last August that involved defiant trespass. Frazer police filed those charges.

Mary Ann Thomas and Liz Hayes are staff writers with Trib Total Media. Thomas can be reached at mthomas@tribweb.com. Hayes can be reached at lhayes@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.