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Missouri man pleads guilty to aiding offender in stabbing; assault charge dropped

A Missouri man initially charged in association with the stabbing of a Perham woman outside a Super 8 in October pleaded guilty Thursday to aiding an offender to avoid arrest, a felony.

A felony assault charge against James Thomas-Lee Manning was dropped.

According to court documents, Perham police responded to a report of a woman bleeding from her head Oct. 6 in the parking lot of Super 8 Hotel.

The woman allegedly told hotel staff and police that she had been stabbed in the back and beaten by two men and that she was missing $50. The woman was transported by ambulance to Perham Health, where she was treated for a collapsed and punctured lung.

According to the complaint, the woman said she had given two men a ride to Super 8 after meeting them earlier that night at Suds Bar.

When police questioned the woman's son, he said the two men were at the woman's apartment after the bar, but had gotten out of hand, prompting his mother to give them a ride to their hotel.

The son described the two men based on their tattoos.

Perham police went to Super 8 Hotel, where they arrested Manning and Robert Wesley McCane, 26, also of Missouri. The two men's tattoos matched the son's descriptions.

Court documents reveal that McCane told law enforcement he did not get a ride from the woman. He said he slept with another woman that night in his motel room and went outside to discover Manning kicking a woman in the face.

Manning's story differed from McCane's. Court documents reveal Manning told law enforcement that McCane paid the victim for sex, which occurred at her apartment building, but became angry after the fact because it "wasn't worth it." While she was driving the two to the hotel, Manning said McCane began to stab the woman in the vehicle. He then said McCane kicked her out and began to kick and hit her while she lay on the ground. He then allegedly took back the $50 he had previously given the woman for sex.

After the arrest, police discovered blood on Manning's arm and pant leg. Police also detected blood on McCane's shoe and grass stains on his pants.

Photos of the two men were taken and the woman positively identified the suspects as her assaulters.

Accounts from people who met Manning and McCane at the bar said the men had said they were only in town for the night and were planning to leave for California the next morning.

Manning initially pleaded not guilty to the assault and aiding an offender charges on Nov. 14. His sentencing date is scheduled for Feb. 3.