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Man arrested after stabbing victim with a 12-inch knife, Austin police say

The man was taken to a local trauma center with potentially life-threatening injuries.

AUSTIN, Texas — A man has been charged with aggravated assault after he allegedly stabbed someone in southeast Austin on June 22.

The incident happened at 6 p.m. at the 6000 block of East Riverside Drive, Austin-Travis County EMS said.

According to an arrest affidavit obtained by KVUE, the victim got off a bus near East Riverside Drive and walked into the woods to relieve himself. That's when the suspect, identified as Julian Casarez, 42, ran out of the woods and stabbed the victim with a large knife, police said.

The victim reportedly told police Casarez first stabbed him on the upper left side of his chest and then in the upper right part of his arm. The victim then ran to a nearby Dollar General to ask for help and was transported to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries, according to police. The victim suffered a punctured lung in addition to his stab wounds.

Upon further investigation, police were able to locate Casarez, who was allegedly found sitting at the back of a bus holding a large black knife. Police said the knife was a 12-inch "Ka-Bar" style knife and that Casarez had small amounts of blood on his shirt.

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The bus driver reportedly told police that when Casarez first tried to get on the bus, he had to tell him to put on a shirt before getting on and later overheard Casarez talk about someone needing to call the police. That's when the bus driver called police.

In an interview with officers, Casarez said he was an "Orejon gang member," which is a rival of the Mexican Mafia, police said. 

According to the affidavit, Casarez told police he had been at his brother's campsite near the Dollar General that day. His brother works with the Mexican Mafia, police said. While at the campsite, Casarez allegedly said his brother was talking to a "Mexican Mafia shot caller." Casarez said he heard his brother pleading with the shot caller that Casarez would "leave without a problem," police said. That's when Casarez allegedly prepared for an "attack" with his knife and pepper spray. 

Police said Casarez then realized it was a set up as everyone started approaching him and he "blacked out." Casarez allegedly told police the next thing he remembered was his brother yelling, "Julian no," while he ran through the tall grass towards the Dollar General. Casarez said that's when he got onto the bus, according to police.

Casarez allegedly told police that while he was on the bus, two men tried to sit behind him. Casarez said he then showed them his knife and told them to move and asked people to call the police, but no one listened, the affidavit said.

Casarez's brother later reportedly told police that he heard a "commotion" and saw Casarez standing over a man who went to visit him. Casarez's brother said that's when Casarez ran to the Dollar General, according to the affidavit. 

The victim later told police he was a retired Mexican Mafia member, but said he did not know Casarez and that he did not go to the campsite, according to the affidavit. Police said it is possible that Casarez was in a disturbance with an unidentified subject that the camp and then ran into the victim, who is "coincidently another Mexican Mafia member," while running away.

According to online records, Casarez is in police custody as of Tuesday afternoon. He has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and assault causing bodily injury. Casarez has bonds totaling to $55,000.

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