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Police: Burglary suspect arrested after alleged ‘meat cleaver’ attack

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SANTA ROSA – A car burglar attacked a man with a meat cleaver in Santa Rosa early Sunday morning when the victim confronted the suspect in the middle of a car burglary, police said.

John Hawkins, 24, was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, possession of stolen property and robbery in connection with the attack.

Police responded at 2:27 a.m. to the area of Hickory Drive to a report of a stabbing and found a victim who said he had just been robbed.

Officers set up a perimeter and used K9 units to track Hawkins and take him into custody, police said.

Police said the ensuing investigation revealed Hawkins was breaking into vehicles on Hickory Drive when the victim confronted him.

Police said Hawkins attacked the victim with a meat cleaver, inflicting a head wound.

Hawkins then approached a second victim and took his cellphone, but in the ensuing struggle, the victim was able to get the suspect to drop the cleaver and several other items, according to police.

Hawkins tried to flea the area when he saw officers arriving on the scene.

The victim struck with the meat cleaver was transported to a hospital with non life-threatening injuries.