Probable Cause Found in Stabbing Case

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DC Superior Court Judge Rainey Brandt found that the prosecution presented sufficient evidence to prove that a stabbing defendant may have been the perpetrator, during a June 18 hearing.

Dennis James Bowler, 56, is charged with assault with intent to kill while armed for his alleged involvement in a stabbing on May 24 at his apartment on the 3000 block of Rodman Street, NW. One individual sustained injuries during the incident.

According to court documents, Bowler asked the victim if he had drugs and the victim said no, causing Bowler to ask him to leave. The victim then tried to retrieve a drug tablet in the apartment, which led to an altercation in which the victim allegedly hit Bowler in the head with a toilet tank cover. Bowler then allegedly stabbed the victim multiple times and the victim attempted to leave but the door was jammed. Eventually both left the apartment building. 

At the hearing, a detective from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) testified he interviewed Bowler at the scene of the crime where Bowler said the victim had hit him on the head with a toilet tank cover. 

The witness recalled his interview with the victim at a hospital, in which the victim said he hit Bowler in self defense because he was being stabbed. 

According to the detective, he obtained video footage from the lobby of the apartment building which showed the victim bleeding as he walked out of the building and Bowler dropping the knife in the lobby after coming down the stairs.

Based on the evidence, Judge Brandt ruled that the prosecution’s evidence presented the mandatory minimum to meet the probable cause ruling, adding that this case is an “elevated version of the classic he said, he said,” as the statements from the victim and Bowler were contradictory. 

Judge Brandt said she inferred the intent to kill from the differing injuries sustained between Bowler and the victim, with the victim’s having multiple stab wounds and two collapsed lungs while Bowler had an injury to the head.

According to Judge Brandt, “Up close and personal force” was used by Bowler during the incident, arguing his actions may not have been in self-defense. 

Jason Clark, Bowler’s defense attorney, requested he be released as he awaits further proceedings. However, Judge Brandt requested additional time to review all evidence and review the guidelines that apply to the case.  

Parties are slated to reconvene June 21. 

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