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Prosecutors charge Kent man with first-degree assault in stabbing of three Des Moines women

King County prosecutors charged a 20-year-old Kent man Wednesday with three counts of first-degree assault in connection with the May 8 stabbing of three women in Des Moines.

Jojo D. Ejonga remains in custody at King County jail in Seattle. Bail was set at $1 million. He is scheduled to be arraigned May 23 at the Norm Maleng Regional Justice Center. If convicted of the current charges, Ejonga faces a minimum of 30 years in prison.

"The defendant presents an extreme danger to the community," wrote King County deputy prosecutor Donald Raz in court documents to request a high bail. "Without warning, the defendant attacked three unarmed women, one of whom was pregnant, with a knife. The stabbing was so severe that two of the three women remain (Wednesday) in critical condition in the hospital."

A woman in her 50s, her daughter in her 20s and a family friend also in her 20s were attacked at about 11 p.m. May 8, according to a Des Moines Police media release.

Paramedics transported all three women to a local hospital to be treated for their injuries.

Ejonga knew the women. He asked them to pick him up at his mother's house in Kent and drive him to the Silverwood Park Apartments in the 23000 block of 30th Avenue South in Des Moines where he told them they would receive payment for a debt he owed them, according to court documents.

The initial assault allegedly began when all four were still in the vehicle. The assault continued on two of the women a short distance from the vehicle.

Ejonga allegedly chased a third woman as she ran west across 30th Avenue South into another apartment complex parking lot. A witness yelled as the man attacked the woman. Ejonga then fled on foot.

Des Moines Police located Ejonga at about 2:30 a.m. May 9 on South 240th Street near Pacific Highway South. He was taken into custody without incident.

Ejonga declined to talk to detectives or officers about the incident. Officers noticed that the man had a cut on his right hand and minor cuts to his face. Officers also observed blood on his shoes and socks, according to court documents.

Officers found a cell phone and checkbook that belonged to one of the women in Ejonga's possession. Officers also found a small knife and a half-pair of scissors on the ground near where Ejonga had walked before his arrest.

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