Lehigh Valley

Police arrest suspect in stabbing death of man in Easton

Lawrence Gaines arrested in connection with homicide early Tuesday morning

Man arrested in connection with Easton stabbing

EASTON, Pa. - Police in Easton have arrested the man they said stabbed another man to death in Easton early Tuesday morning.

Lawrence Gaines was taken into custody by police without incident around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday in the unit block of S. 11th St., according to Easton police. Officers had set up surveillance Tuesday night and through Wednesday morning as they believed Gaines was still in the area.

Gaines was wanted in connection with the stabbing death of William Thompson at Union and Ferry streets early Tuesday morning, police said.

Thompson, 43, was found lying in the middle of the intersection, unconscious, with multiple stab wounds when police arrived.

Neighbors said it's not the first time trouble has hit a little too close to home.

"I saw him there bleeding, and then the cops were just running all around, it kind of put me in a little bit of a panic state," said Ferry street resident Elizabeth Morales.

People who live on the street said they have seen their share of suspicious activity in recent years, despite the fact it is heavily patrolled by police and sheriff's deputies due to its close proximity to the prison and other law enforcement offices.

"It's like little offices for drug dealers and prostitution behind every nook and cranny," said Ferry Street resident Terrence Miller.

Residents said they met with city leaders last week to address problems.

The city is working on lighting and possibly blocking traffic to the alley, and patrols have been beefed up, said Mayor Sal Panto, D-Easton, but he noted that turning the neighborhood around will take more.

"We need the help from the slum lords. These are not owner occupied people getting trouble. These are people who are transient, living in apartments they shouldn't even be there," said Panto.

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