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Thu, Dec. 05

Unprovoked attacker given maximum time
Bennie Masters receives 35 years for stabbing 51-year-old with a machete

Bennie Masters

Bennie Masters

KINGMAN - A 31-year-old man found guilty of attempted murder during a 2009 unprovoked attack in north Kingman was sentenced to 35 years in prison last week.

Prosecutor Jace Zack described Bennie Bernard Masters as the sort of violent offender the public needs to be protected from for as long as possible.

"If there is a definition of cruel, heinous and depraved, it's the defendant's conduct in this case," Zack said.

Masters was convicted by a jury in June of attacking a 51-year-old man in the 3500 block of Quail Lane May 15, 2009. Police say Masters pushed the victim off of his bike and stabbed him repeatedly with a machete.

The victim, who was said to have remained conscious during the stabbing, continues to deal with issues caused by the injuries. The victim's sister spoke in court Friday and said her brother had been stabbed near his lungs, and every breath he took to caused excruciating pain for months.

No motive was ever established, although there was testimony during the trial that Masters had used methamphetamine in the hours leading up to the attack. Masters did not testify during the trial and did not make a statement at his sentencing hearing.

Judge Steven Conn imposed the 35-year sentence, the maximum as allowed by law. Masters was also sentenced to a 25-year concurrent sentence for aggravated assault in the same case.

Masters fled the state after the incident. He was arrested Oct. 27, 2009, in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. A month after entering the Mohave County Jail, Masters was charged with aggravated assault for reportedly kicking a detention officer who was escorting him back to his cell. The detention officer had to use pepper spray to restrain Masters.

Masters was released from prison in September 2008 after serving 18 months for aggravated assault.

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