NEWTON (CBS) – A man charged in a brutal random attack at a supermarket in Newton has a long history of mental illness, a court clinician said Tuesday.
Matthew Muradov, 23, of Newton, is accused of stabbing 79-year-old David Harris, a physician at Boston Children’s Hospital, inside the Star Market on Commonwealth Avenue just before 2 p.m. Monday.
According to the prosecutor at Muradov’s arraignment in Newton District Court, Harris bumped into Muradov with a shopping cart, Muradov yelled “Get away from me!” and then lunged at him with a kitchen knife.
Police say the men did not know each other. Harris was treated at a nearby hospital for two puncture wounds.
Muradov was arrested outside the store. He is charged with armed assault with intent to murder.
A court clinician said the young man has a long history of mental illness and was released from a hospital psychiatric unit just three days before the attack.
Muradov’s attorney said his client would not talk and gazed straight ahead with a blank stare when he met with him Tuesday morning. Muradov was allowed to stay out of the courtroom, downstairs in the courthouse during his arraignment.
He was ordered held without bail and sent to Bridgewater State Hospital for an evaluation. His parents attended the hearing, but did not speak to reporters.
In a statement, Boston Children’s Hospital said Dr. Harris was already back at work and is doing fine. “He wanted to share a message that access to mental health care is vital and it is important that patients are given an appropriate amount of treatment time before they are discharged,” a spokesperson for the hospital said.