The suspect in the stabbing death of a New Haven man received a pre-trial date of June 17 and a trial date of July 11 at an arraignment Jan. 6 in Nelson Circuit Court.
David Jerome Willett, 26, pleaded not guilt to charges of murder and second-degree persistent felony offender for fatally wounding Eric Douglas Stallard, 39, New Haven, Dec. 2, 2010, after a quarrel between the two men escalated into violence.
Willett was previously convicted of second-degree robbery in Nelson Circuit Court in September 2002. He remained in prison for the crime until April 2003, when he was released on probation.
During the next several years, Willett was in and out of jail several times for violating the terms of his probation, most recently in 2008 when he was arrested for driving under the influence. According to Nelson County Jail records, Willett was released from the facility July 1 after serving time for the probation violation.
The alleged stabbing took place shortly before 8 p.m. in a unit at Rolling Ridge Apartments in New Haven. After receiving a 911 call from a neighbor at about 7:50 p.m., law enforcement and Nelson County EMS rushed to the apartment and took Stallard by ambulance to the Nelson County Fairgrounds, where he was transferred onto the helicopter to be taken to the University of Louisville Hospital.
Stallard was in the air en route to the hospital when he died, according to a press release from the Nelson County Coroner’s Office. The helicopter was then diverted to Flaget Memorial Hospital, where medical staff attempted to revive Stallard. He was pronounced dead by the coroner at 10 p.m.
Nelson County Sheriff’s Department Detective Jon Snow is investigating the incident and said the deadly fight stemmed from a disagreement between Willett and Stallard concerning who Stallard was dating. Snow described the weapon used to inflict the fatal wound as a 7-inch lockblade.