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Fargo man, 31, arrested for Christmas Eve homicide

FARGO — A 26-year-old man died from a stab wound here Christmas Eve morning and a 31-year-old Fargo man with an extensive criminal history is now in jail for homicide.

No motive is known for the crime at 1321 17th Ave. S., just west of Duane’s House of Pizza, said Deputy Chief Joe Anderson.

On Saturday, Dec. 24, a call went out at 4:19 a.m. for medical help at the home, police said. Three people, two men and one woman, were at the house when officers arrived.

A 26-year-old Fargo man was found with a stab wound to the chest. He was taken to a hospital emergency room, where he later died from the injury. Officers arrested 31-year-old Timothy Lynn Porter of Fargo and he was booked into the Cass County Jail.

During the preliminary police investigation, it was determined the two men were in a dispute. The nature of the dispute and Porter’s motive remain under investigation, police said. The victim was not able to make a statement to officers.

“This was not a random attack. The individuals were known to each other,” Anderson said.

The victim’s family has been notified of the death and invoked their rights pursuant to Marsy’s Law, a state constitutional amendment meant to protect crime victims’ rights that was approved by voters in November. Because of that, Anderson said the department will not be releasing the victim’s name.

Porter has an extensive criminal history in Cass County. Since 2003, he has been charged with 30 different crimes, ranging from two DUIs, possession of controlled substance, disorderly conduct and driving with a suspended license 11 different times.   

He was convicted of at least two felonies, one for drug paraphernalia possession in 2003 and, in 2012, assaulting an officer and bouncer at Big D’s Bar & Grill and then spitting in the face of another officer.

It’s unknown at this time whether drugs or alcohol were involved in Saturday’s homicide, Anderson said.

Porter’s sister, Lillian Porter, of Winnebago, Minn., said her brother lived at the small blue house where the homicide took place.

Neighbor Jo Rosenberry, who saw police cars outside the home when she left for work Saturday morning, said “I was at work when my husband texted me the news. I was shocked.” Rosenberry said she didn't even know if anyone lived at the crime scene. “It was so quiet.”

The neighborhood has seen some vandalism and drug dealing, she said, and a drunk man tried breaking into her home in August, but she said “this has been a quiet street.” Her husband grew up there and said nothing like this has happened before.

“It's unfortunate that it happened on Christmas Eve morning. It's going to be on my mind for a while,” she said.