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Published: Saturday, 5/24/2008

2 jailed in attack with ax on couple

BY BRIDGET THARP
BLADE STAFF WRITER

MONROE - Two brothers were arrested for assault after beating a couple with an ax Thursday near Plum Creek, Michigan State Police report.

Arrested were Kenny List, 18, pending two felony assault charges, and Nicky List, 19, also pending two felony assault charges, including assault with a weapon.

The brothers, both of Monroe, were being held in the Monroe County jail, each in lieu of $25,000 bonds.

Injured were Nicholas Barker, 31, and his fiancee, Buffy Leach, 28, both also of Monroe. They were treated at Mercy Memorial Hospital. Mr. Barker sustained a black eye, bruising, and gashes on his legs and arms; Ms. Leach had several broken ribs, Mr. Barker said.

The incident began about 8 p.m. with a confrontation between the List brothers and two of Ms. Leach's sons, Baylee Leach, 12, and Dustin Williams-Leach, 11, who were fishing in Plum Creek.

The List brothers and three companions, who were camping nearby, exchanged words with the boys and told them to leave.

When the couple approached to confront the campers, the List brothers charged at them, according to witness statements.

Witnesses told police Mr. Barker was knocked down when one of the List brothers struck his left arm with the ax, and the pair began to fight.

Meanwhile, Ms. Leach was pinned and beaten with a stick or hammer by the other brother, who threatened to kill her as he held a pocket knife to her neck, according to the report. The other companions joined the brothers in kicking both the victims on the ground, the report said.

The suspects fled as neighbors approached to help, said police, who recovered an ax and a hammer.

Kenny List told police he engaged in a fistfight with Mr. Barker but denied using any objects as weapons, according to police. He also told police his brother, Nicky, was not involved in the fight, the report said.

Staff writer Mike Sigov contributed to this report.



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