Pierce County prosecutors filed charges Wednesday, accusing a Tacoma man of stabbing a woman to death with a sword in a grocery store parking lot.
Adbelhakim Choubabi, 52, was charged with first-degree murder.
According to court documents, at around 7:48 p.m. on April 30, Tacoma police officers responded to a report of a woman being hit with a stick at Candy Market in the 700 block of Market Street.
Medics with the Tacoma Fire Department arrived and found a woman who had been stabbed and killed.
A witness told police she was walking her dog when she saw Choubabi, a clerk at the Candy Market, hitting a woman on the ground.
The witness said the woman would often sleep outside the market and Choubabi would cash checks for her.
The witness said she saw Choubabi hitting the woman with a “long stick or pole” before he got into the backseat of a car that the witness said was being driven by the owner of the Candy Market.
Officers interviewed the store owner’s son, who identified himself as the man who picked up Choubabi after the incident.
According to the owner’s son, he pulled up to the store when Choubabi jumped into his car and said, “Go, go, go!”
The owner’s son said they went to a restaurant where Choubabi told him the woman tried to kill him, so he stabbed her.
The owner’s son then convinced Choubabi he needed to go back and talk to the police.
Choubabi told police he was working at the store when the woman stole sunglasses and condoms.
He said he was tired of the woman because she constantly stole items, “smelled bad,” and would urinate outside the store.
Choubabi said he tried to call the police, but “the police didn’t do anything.”
When the woman walked out of the store with the stolen items, Choubabi followed her and grabbed the items.
Choubabi said the woman hit him in the back of the head, so he went back inside the market and got a sword.
He said he approached the woman, swung the sword into her face and stabbed her in the stomach.
After the attack, Choubabi said he went back in the store to put the sword back inside, locked the door, went back outside and when he saw the owner’s son pull up in his car, he jumped inside.
Detectives searched the market and found a large Samurai-type sword in a sheath near the cash register.
An examination revealed large amounts of blood on the blade.
Bail was set at $1.5 million.
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