Charges: Boy's throat slashed during mother's suicide attempt at Anchorage homeless facility

Casey Grove
Bill Roth

A three-year-old boy's condition has improved after his mother allegedly stabbed him intentionally Tuesday, according to Anchorage police.

The mother, 40-year-old Tracia Jordan-Sainte, faces charges of attempted murder and first-degree assault.

Police said Jordan-Sainte stabbed the boy at Safe Harbor Inn, a long-term homeless housing facility, a little after 1 p.m. Tuesday. According to a charging document filed in court against Jordan-Sainte, staff at Safe Harbor told police dispatchers the woman was trying to commit suicide.

The charges describe what police officers learned about the alleged stabbing:

Another resident had encountered Jordan-Sainte "half naked" in a hallway, where she asked him to kill her, the charges say.

The man told staff at the facility's front desk, who went upstairs to check on Jordan-Sainte. "She claimed to have killed her son," the charges say.

Staff members used a master key to get into her room, found the boy on the floor with blood on him and asked if he was hurt. He nodded.

"He nodded again when asked if his mother had hurt him," the charges say.

Jordan-Sainte then grabbed a pair of scissors and made jabbing motions at her neck. The staff members wrestled the scissors away from her and called police. Jordan-Sainte later admitted to officers that she had stabbed her son in the neck, the charges say.

Medics rushed the boy to a hospital, where he underwent emergency, lifesaving surgery, according to the charges.

"His neck had been sliced open across the entire front," the charges say.

Police spokeswoman Jennifer Castro said Wednesday that while the boy had initially been listed in critical condition, he was improving following the surgery.

"Detectives had gone to the hospital a little earlier and checked on his condition, and he's stable," Castro said.

The boy is in the custody of the state Office of Children's Services, which will determine his placement upon release from the hospital, Castro said.

Jordan-Sainte appeared to be disoriented and had trouble answering Judge Leslie Dickson's questions in Anchorage jail court on Wednesday afternoon. Jordan-Sainte stared straight ahead as two correctional officers held her arms, another standing behind her.

Judge Dickson asked if Jordan-Sainte's name was spelled correctly on the charging document and if her age was correct.

"Got you, bitch," Jordan-Sainte shouted after a long pause.

Dickson said, based on where Jordan-Sainte was living, she was appointing her a public defender. Agreeing with the request of a state prosecutor, who said Jordan-Sainte was new to Anchorage and had family in New York City, the judge set Jordan-Sainte's bail at $500,000, payable by cash or bond.