Stabbing and Shooting in Downtown Hazleton

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HAZLETON -- It was a fight that started inside a downtown Hazleton night spot. It ended on the sidewalk with two people seriously hurt -- one stabbed and one shot.

Police in Hazleton say the whole thing started around 2:30 a.m. Monday inside Crystal Barbecue and Lounge on East Broad Street.

A man and woman argued inside. The argument moved to the sidewalk. Police said Nelson Hernandez Rivera, 35, stabbed a woman multiple times in the chest. Investigators characterized it as a domestic assault.

"We know there is some sort of relationship between the two. It appears it had started inside, came outside. There was some sort of altercation. The female was being stabbed. The security guard attempted to intervene and that's when we had the shot fired," explained Hazleton Police Chief Jerry Speziale.

Chief Speziale called the security guard "bona fide and licensed." The gun was licensed as well. It appears the guard did the right thing, but the chief stopped short in one aspect of this case.

"Did the security guard prevent a homicide? I don't want to get into the whole mechanics of it and everything. it appears everything was done properly at this point."

No one else was hurt. Police have not said what started the argument that led to the stabbing that led to the shooting.

The names of the stabbing victim has not yet been released. Police said both were flown to a trauma center, and both were hurt, "very seriously."

Hernandez Rivera is charged with aggravated assault.


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