A 73-year-old man was charged with attempted murder and first-degree assault after allegedly stabbing his wife with a butcher knife Wednesday evening, an episode that stopped only after a neighbor armed with a pistol intervened, authorities said.
John Marshall Bagley told police he was upset his wife, Judy, was divorcing him and began to stab her, chasing her outside into the driveway of their South Anchorage home, according to charging documents.
But a neighbor walking his dog in the neighborhood north of Ocean View Park heard Judy Bagley scream for help, witnessed the stabbing and then used his pistol to fire a warning shot into the air, diverting Bagley's attention away from his wife, the charges say.
The neighbor, Donald Brown, then subdued Bagley, and handed Judy Bagley a phone to call police, the charges say. Brown later told police that Bagley was "in a rage."
Judy Bagley's call for help was made at 6:36 p.m. Moments later, police arrived at the home on the 31000 block of Back Street to find Judy Bagley in the driveway with stab wounds to her chest and "multiple defensive wounds to her hands," according to the charges.
In an interview following the arrest, John Marshall Bagley told investigators that his wife was divorcing him, and had told him she had paid a lawyer $5,000 as a retainer, the charges say.
Bagley "said he was upset, grabbed a butcher knife and began stabbing Judy Bagley," the charges say.
When Judy Bagley tried to defend herself, Bagley told police, he cut her hands, and when she ran outside to the backyard, he chased her into the driveway before stabbing her, the charges say.
According to the charges, Bagley said that while Judy Bagley lay on the ground, she told him, "'I'll give you everything, just don't kill me."
In the interview, Bagley "told police it was his intention to kill his wife," the charges say.
Neighbor Virginia Sanchez said she had lived near the Bagleys for two decades, and knew them, but not well enough to know if there were marital problems.
She said she heard what sounded like a gunshot Wednesday night, but the sound was faint, and she didn't realize what it was. Her family only heard what had happened after the police arrived.
"It's sad, really sad," Sanchez said.
Bagley has no prior criminal convictions in Alaska. He was arraigned Thursday and is being held in Anchorage jail in lieu of $500,000 bail.
Judy Bagley was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries and was in critical but stable condition Thursday, police said.
Reach Devin Kelly at email@example.com or 257-4314.
By DEVIN KELLY