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MailTribune.com
  • Machete attack brings assault charge

  • One homeless man faces 71/2 years in prison for allegedly wounding another homeless man in the hand with a machete Sunday in an attack during an argument over living arrangements on a hill outside of Ashland, authorities said.
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  • One homeless man faces 71/2 years in prison for allegedly wounding another homeless man in the hand with a machete Sunday in an attack during an argument over living arrangements on a hill outside of Ashland, authorities said.
    Jon Coldwate, 45, was arrested Sunday evening in Ashland on charges of felony assault and menacing stemming from a high-noon attack on four men off the 2200 block of Highway 99, according to the Jackson County Sheriff's Department.
    He was arraigned Monday afternoon in Jackson County Circuit Court on charges of first-degree assault, second-degree assault, unlawful use of a weapon and three counts of menacing.
    A first-degree assault conviction carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 90 months in prison under Oregon sentencing laws. Second-degree assault carries a mandatory minimum of 70 months in prison.
    Jackson County Circuit Judge Tim Barnack set Coldwate's bail at $50,000 and returned him to the Jackson County Jail.
    Coldwate was due back in court Aug. 24, records show.
    A 28-year-old man told deputies that Coldwate came toward him and three others wielding a machete and screaming that he was going to kill them in a dispute over who had permission to live on that property, deputies said.
    The victim stepped in front of the other men and suffered a severely cut hand when struck by the machete, according to the sheriff's department. The wound required medical treatment that included several stitches, deputies said.
    Coldwate ran, and a police tracking dog failed to locate him, sheriff's spokeswoman Andrea Carlson said. He was found and arrested about eight hours later in Ashland, Carlson said.
    Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470, or email at mfreeman@mailtribune.com.
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