Police blame Meridian man's rampage on drugs

A Meridian man is accused of at least seven assaults and other crimes during a 90-minute period.

jsowell@idahostatesman.comAugust 23, 2013 

Sean Daniel Carnell

Police say Sean Daniel Carnell, 23, on Wednesday severely injured a bicyclist; punched a 15-year-old boy in the face and stole his skateboard; kicked a 10-year-old boy's dog in the ribs and leg; struck a construction worker in the face and back with a shovel; forced his way into an apartment and choked a 36-year-old woman; kidnapped a 45-year-old man and tipped him over in his wheelchair; and broke windows out of a house.

Deputy Chief Tracy Basterrechea of the Meridian Police Department said it's one of the oddest cases he's ever seen. Most such incidents are confined to a single act of violence, usually involving people who know one another, he said.

"You just don't see random acts of violence like this. He wanted to beat up everything and everyone that he could," Basterrechea said.

Police suspect that Carnell was under the influence of drugs. They won't know for sure until blood tests come back in a few weeks.

The first incident occurred about 9:30 a.m. at the skateboard park at Tully Park, 2500 N. Linder Road. A teenager was struck several times, but police did not learn about the attack until later in the day.

It's believed Carnell then attacked a bicyclist pedaling near the park. Doug Strosnider, Nampa deputy fire chief, identified the victim as Nampa Fire Capt. Chris Cade, one of the department's peer fitness trainers and rope rescue technicians.

Cade, a Meridian resident and avid bicyclist, suffered "numerous and significant injuries," Strosnider said.

A woman walking on the path found Cade unconscious. He was taken to Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, where he was in fair condition Thursday evening.

"We're still in a state of shock," Strosnider said. "He deals with emergencies on a daily basis and he would have been in the middle of it had he found another victim."

Police say Carnell continued to Northwest 8th Street and Delmar Drive, where he approached the 10-year-old riding his bike, kicked the dog and walked away.

Next, he proceeded to an apartment complex where he had been staying in the 1300 block of Northwest 8th Street. Police said Carnell struck a construction worker outside the building and left him in a trench. The worker was listed in serious condition at a local hospital, Basterrechea told the Associated Press.

Police said Carnell then forced his way into an apartment and attacked the woman who lives there. The victim's teenage daughter and her boyfriend interrupted the attack and Carnell fled.

Carnell next approached the man in the wheelchair and pushed him down the street before tipping him over in the 1100 block of 8th Street, officials said.

As police headed toward the apartment complex where two of the attacks occurred, a group of construction workers said they watched as the suspect broke out windows at a home on 8th Street.

"They stayed back. They were good witnesses. They didn't try to step in and confront the suspect," Basterrechea said.

Carnell was arrested in the 700 block of West Pine Street at 11 a.m., seven minutes after the first 911 call came in. Officers took him into custody without incident, Basterrechea said.

Carnell was taken to the Ada County Jail, where he is being held on charges of robbery, burglary, felony and misdemeanor counts of battery, two counts of aggravated assault, and malicious injury to property.

He is being held on $1 million bond. He was arraigned Thursday and is scheduled to appear Sept. 5 for a preliminary hearing before 4th District Judge Daniel Steckel.

Anyone who may have seen the attack on Cade or any of the other incidents is asked to call Meridian detectives at 888-6678.

John Sowell: 377-6423, Twitter: @IDS_Sowell. The Associated Press contributed.

Idaho Statesman is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service