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Grand Forks man arrested after stabbing

GRAND FORKS - A Grand Forks man was arrested in the stabbing of a man at a downtown Grand Forks bar after bar employees chased the suspected knife-wielder into a nearby restaurant, where he locked himself in the bathroom until police arrived.

Lynn Lee Rice, 63, of Grand Forks was arrested on a charge of aggravated assault in the stabbing.

It started when police got a call just before 10 p.m. Saturday that a man in the alley behind Gilly's Bar and Grill, 9 N. 3rd St., was bleeding from a stab wound in his side.

Emergency responders from the Grand Forks Fire Department and Altru Ambulance showed up and took Lawrence Vargas, 34, to Altru Hospital in Grand Forks.

Police said Rice had the knife when he was arrested.

Sgt. Tom Laughlin said Rice and Vargas knew each other.

"It started as a fight in the bathroom (in Gilly's) and escalated to a stabbing," Laughlin said.

The bouncers from Gilly's chased Rice down the alley and across Demers Avenue as Rice ran into the Subway restaurant and locked himself in the bathroom, where police found him.

Vargas was treated and released from the hospital Sunday.

Besides the assault charge, Rice was cited with criminal mischief after he kicked out the rear window of a police vehicle, Laughlin said. "He didn't break the glass, but kicked it out of its frame."

Rice is expected to make an initial court appearance today.