Lehigh Valley

Argument over car leads to alleged sibling stabbing

Lower Macungie man faces aggravated assault charge

L. MACUNGIE TWP., Pa. - An argument between brothers over who got the car for the night ended with a stabbing and assault charges.

Pennsylvania State Police charged Ruben Morales III with a felony count of aggravated assault following a fight with his brother on May 9 at his Buttercup Road home in Lower Macungie Township. District Judge Rod Beck arraigned the 28-year-old hours later, setting bail at $100,000.

Shortly before 6:30 p.m., a man called Lehigh County 911 to report that his brother was stabbing him, according to court records. The call was transferred to the state police Fogelsville barracks, where troopers reported hearing fighting and yelling in the background of the open line.

When police arrived at the house, the front door was unlocked, and troopers could hear yelling inside the home. A man standing in the downstairs foyer directed state police to second floor, where the two men were fighting.

As the victim, Leandro Mendez, came out of a bedroom, a knife-wielding Morales raised it toward Mendez. Troopers ordered him to stand down, but he ignored them, prompting one of the troopers to use his Taser.

With an unarmed Morales on the floor, his brother continued to charge, prompting a trooper to use the Taser on him.

The investigation revealed that Morales and his brother had been arguing over the use of a vehicle, which led to a fight. Police said Mendez punched Morales in the face. The two men separated, and Morales retreated to his bedroom.

That’s when Morales allegedly grabbed a large kitchen knife, broke down the bedroom door and attacked Mendez. He allegedly stabbed the victim twice, once each on the left hand and forearm.

Along with the aggravated assault charge, Morales faces single counts of simple assault and harassment. He failed to post bail and was sent to Lehigh County Jail to await his preliminary hearing scheduled for May 31.

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