Feb. 11—EAU CLAIRE — An Eau Claire man will spend three years on probation for a stabbing incident outside of a Birch Street tavern on New Year’s Day in 2021.

James R. Sande, 35, 2610 Mont Claire Road, pleaded guilty recently in Eau Claire County Court to a felony count of second-degree recklessly endangering safety.

A felony count of substantial battery was dismissed but considered by Judge Emily Long at sentencing.

As conditions of probation, Sande cannot have contact with the victim, drink alcohol, enter taverns, or have contact with known drug dealers or users. He must also maintain absolute sobriety, and undergo an alcohol and drug assessment and any other recommended programming or treatment.

Long will hold a hearing in March on a requested restitution amount of $44,583.

According to the criminal complaint:

Eau Claire police responded to the Mega Holiday gas station on Birch Street at 4:10 a.m. on New Year’s Day in 2021 because Sande was inside with blood all over his white sweater, face and hands.

Sande appeared to be highly intoxicated. His eyes were red and bloodshot and his speech was slow and heavily slurred.

Sande said he had been at the Brickhouse Pub on Birch Street, where he was trying to help a friend who was having relationship issues.

Sande said his friend was arguing with his girlfriend. When he tried to mediate, Sande said he was approached by people he did not know.

While being confronted, Sande said an unknown male pointed a handgun at his face.

Sande said he was then hit in the face, which knocked him to the ground. He was punched and kicked by unknown people while he was on the ground.

Fearing for his life, Sande said he pulled a knife from his pocket and began slashing it.

Sande said he was unsure whether he struck anybody with the knife. He said he ran to the gas station because people were threatening to kill him.

The victim was taken to Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire with two stab wounds to the left ribs and armpit area.

The victim’s brother told police two people pulled out guns after the stabbing.

The brother refused to say who had guns but were adamant they were not displayed until after the stabbing.

Police interviewed the victim at the hospital. He said he was drunk and outside the Brickhouse Pub smoking a cigarette in the parking lot.

The victim said there was a large crowd outside and he heard someone calling his name and asking for help breaking up a fight.

The victim said his friend was in a fight with another man, so he pushed that man away from his friend.

The victim said the man then lunged at him and stabbed him under his arm.

The victim said he did not know the name of the man who stabbed him.

After he was injured, the victim said he realized he was bleeding heavily and got a ride to the hospital.




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