Stephen E. Gooler told police he had been drinking, blacked out and doesn’t remember the attack.
A 51-year-old man is charged with using scissors to fatally stab a Mounds View man he met on a phone chat line.
Stephen E. Gooler, of Minneapolis, told police he and the victim, Perry Paulson, 49, were drinking vodka on June 20 before the stabbing, according to charges filed in Ramsey County District Court.
According the complaint: Gooler met Paulson on a chat line and the two met each other for the first time on June 17. They met again on June 20 at Paulson’s apartment in Mounds View. Gooler told police they had been drinking vodka, and that he “blacked out” before the stabbing.
Neighbors called police when a naked, bloody Paulson knocked on their door.
“Help, help, he stabbed me,” Paulson said, according to the complaint. “Help, I’m dying.”
Neighbors told police blood was spurting from his neck and shoulder area, and that Gooler was behind Paulson and ran back into Paulson’s apartment.
“He stabbed me first,” Gooler said, according to the complaint.
Neighbors tried to stop Paulson’s bleeding, but he died at the scene. When police arrived to the building about 8:45 p.m., they found Gooler lying naked on the ground.
He told police he fell out of a third-floor balcony.
Officers found large mounts of blood in the building’s entryway, carpet and ceiling. More blood was found in the apartment, along with two bloody knives and a bloody pair of scissors.
Gooler, who fractured three vertebrae and has bleeding on the brain from his jump, told police he did not remember what happened, but that he didn’t think Paulson would hurt him because he was a gentle man, the charges said. Gooler also had a cut on his right hand.
“If there was a scuffle, it was not serious because we like each other,” he told police.
The complaint said that when officers told Gooler that Paulson was dead, he “did not react at first and then appeared to attempt to cry without success.”
“I can’t believe that I stabbed him,” Gooler said, according to the complaint. “I was blacked out.”
Gooler acknowledged that in 1988 he was sentenced to 18 months in prison for brandishing a knife at someone while “blacked out.”
The medical examiner’s report shows that the scissors cut Paulson’s artery and pierced his right lung.
Gooler is charged with two counts of second-degree murder. Bail was set at $1 million.
Chao Xiong • 612-270-4708 Twitter: @ChaoStrib