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Man charged in sword attack

LARAMIE (WNE) — Paul Harper, former owner of Paul’s House of Food in downtown Laramie, was charged with second-degree attempted murder for attacking his friend with a sword.

If Harper were convicted of that crime, he would face a minimum prison sentence of 20 years.

The attack came during the early hours of July 13 when the victim — who told police he and Harper had been friends for four years — had been drinking at Harper’s house.

After Harper cut his friend several times on his left hand and wrist, the victim was life-flighted to UC Health Medical Center of the Rockies in Colorado, where a doctor said that the victim will “likely only be able to use his thumb and index finger in the future and would not be able to use the remaining digits,” according to a police affidavit of probable cause.

Harper and the victim, identified as E.B. in court documents, each gave conflicting accounts of what led to the attack.

After the sword attack ended Monday, E.B. fled the house and tried calling police. Unable to use his left hand, he later said he “had to manipulate the phone while it was tucked between his chest and his functioning right hand and it took a long time to call for help.”

Harper was the first to call police and gave conflicting accounts. He initially said he hit E.B. with the sword after the man had broken into the house