Saylorsburg, Monroe County - Police says a man in the Poconos stabbed his own son to death. People who know the family say they can't believe it.
Thomas Howard Senior is locked up in Monroe County. As of 3:30 on Monday afternoon he was charged with aggravated assault. That's because his son Thomas Howard Junior, 35, was still alive when his father was charged. Junior died at the hospital so police expect they will add a homicide charge.
People who live in the little community near Saylor's Lake are in shock. Mary Greenleaf reacted, "This is the worst thing that ever happened."
Neighbors don't understand how a man could stab his own son. ""That's terrible. I don't know what he was thinking," said Greenleaf.
Police say it happened Saturday night. They believe Thomas Howard Senior got in a fight with Thomas Howard Junior. They say the father stabbed the son at a home on Tulip Lane in Saylorsburg. The father then called police himself.
According to police paperwork, the stabbing happened at 405 Tulip Lane but when police arrived they found the victim across the street on the neighbor's porch. He was bleeding and officers say his intestines were exposed.
He had emergency surgery at Pocono Medical Center but did not survive his injuries. "It's just heartbreaking and I'm in shock," said neighbor Lisa Bartolomeo.
Bartolomeo said she has known the Howard family for at least 5 years and never sensed any problems. She said, "It's not something that I would ever imagine that I could ever picture happening 'cause he was nothing but like a doting, wonderful father, great kids."
She noted that it is especially tragic because the victim's mother died recently. Then added, "They're just wonderful people. Everything that I've ever known of them. They've always been helpful. Both father and son have always gone out of their way to help me and anyone else that needed it."
Howard will face a preliminary hearing within the next few weeks. A judge will decide whether or not there is enough evidence to send the case to trial.