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YCSO nabs man accused of attacking roadside 'preacher'

Nathaniel Stubbs

Nathaniel Stubbs

Yavapai County sheriff's deputies arrested a 41-year-old man Tuesday, Feb. 3, who is accused of assaulting a man near a golf course in Cornville.

According to Sheriff's Office spokesman Dwight D'Evelyn, deputies responded around 6 p.m. on Cornville Road near the Verde Santa Fe Golf Course. A 51-year-old man reported he had been assaulted and stabbed, and the suspect was still in the area.

Emergency medical personnel treated the man for non-life-threatening injuries to his left arm.

Meanwhile, deputies searched the area and found Nathaniel Stubbs, 41, about 1 mile away on a forest road.

Stubbs had a probation warrant out of Maricopa County, and the vehicle he was using, a 1998 Ford Explorer, had reportedly been stolen from his mother.

Deputies interviewed the victim, who had been transported to the hospital. "He told them that he was 'preaching' along the roadside at (state Highway) 89A and Cornville Road," D'Evelyn said. The victim told deputies Stubbs was intoxicated and stopped to talk to him. The victim discouraged Stubbs from driving, and offered to buy food for him, authorities said.

The victim left for food and returned to find Stubbs parked in the area, consuming hard liquor. Stubbs reportedly allowed the victim to drive the Explorer to a roadway turnout where Stubbs could eat and sleep.

The victim then returned to his motorhome in a nearby campsite, but Stubbs followed him and allegedly "initiated a confrontation and accused the victim of stealing his phone and then tried to grab the victim," D'Evelyn said.

The victim raised his hands to defend himself and was injured by a knife Stubbs was holding. The victim reportedly knocked Stubbs to the ground and recovered the knife.

"He also took the keys to the Ford Explorer Stubbs had been driving," D'Evelyn said.

The victim flagged down a passerby to call the sheriff's office.

After treatment at a local hospital, Stubbs was booked at the Camp Verde Detention Center on the outstanding probation warrant and vehicle theft. Authorities said he was belligerent throughout the booking process. He remains in custody on $4,500 bond.

D'Evelyn said assault charges are pending follow-up with the victim, who initially declined to prosecute.

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