Fargo woman accused of downtown stabbing spree has history of knife attacks

Ashley Larson terrorized at least three other people with a knife in the past before stabbing three people near Mexican Village restaurant in Fargo, according to criminal complaints. She also hit a man with a baseball bat and bit him, court documents said.

Ashley Larson is the suspect in the stabbing of three people on the southwest fringe of downtown Fargo on Thursday, May 13.

FARGO — A woman accused of stabbing three people before barricading herself in a vehicle at a downtown Fargo restaurant has a history of attacking others with weapons, including a knife assault that happened less than a month ago.

Ashley Ivy Larson, 30, of Fargo was slated to appear Friday, May 14, in Cass County District Court on three felony charges of aggravated assault with a dangerous weapon. She is accused of stabbing John Townsend, Sandra Miles and Sabra Low on Thursday.

Court documents revealed some new details about Thursday's attacks. Police believe Townsend was stabbed in his apartment at 9 ½ Ninth St. S., though he was not cooperative in giving details about the stabbing, court documents said.

Investigators alleged Larson stabbed Townsend before running to the nearby Mexican Village restaurant at 814 Main Ave., just east of Townsend’s apartment. The two know each other, but it’s unclear what relationship they shared, police said.

In the restaurant parking lot, Larson asked Low and Miles, two women she didn't know, for a ride, according to court documents. Larson then rushed at Low and stabbed her in the chest area before stabbing Miles multiple times, court documents allege.


Low and Miles fled and Larson barricaded herself in the vehicle Low and Miles were getting into, court documents said.

The stabbing victims suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

One of the stabbed women told witnesses that Larson was naked and “drenched in blood” when she allegedly attacked the two in the parking lot. A nude Larson surrendered to police after a four-hour standoff.

Authorities shut down a portion of Main Avenue near the Mexican restaurant during the incident. SWAT was called to the scene with armored vehicles and rifles.

Larson has a criminal history that includes assault, terrorizing, disorderly conduct for fighting and fleeing police. Most recently, Fargo police arrested her for attacking Rogelio Adame on April 22 in the 800 block of Eighth Ave. N.

Court documents in that case said she tried to stab Adame with a knife. Adame was not stabbed, but Larson struck him with the handle of the knife, court documents said. Adame told police he was afraid that Larson might kill him, according to a criminal complaint.

Larson was charged with felony terrorizing in Cass County District Court but pleaded guilty to a lesser misdemeanor count on May 7. Judge Steven McCullough sentenced her to time served with a year of supervised probation.

Larson previously pleaded guilty in 2015 to two fifth-degree misdemeanor assault charges in Clay County District Court. Moorhead police arrested Larson after she pulled a knife on two women at a 515 ½ 30th Ave. S. apartment on Sept. 21, 2015, according to a criminal complaint.


The two women were cleaning the apartment for one of the victims’ son, who at the time was in jail, the complaint said. Larson, who lived in the apartment, said she wanted the women out of the apartment, the complaint said.

No injuries were reported in that case. Two felony counts of second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon were dismissed. In exchange for a plea deal, Judge Galen Vaa sentenced Larson on Dec. 18, 2015, to 90 days in jail, with credit for 53 days.

Larson was back in Clay County Court less than a month later for a Jan. 1, 2016, incident at the same apartment. David Fairbanks, who shared a child with Larson, was found by police hiding in a closet, according to a criminal complaint. He claimed an intoxicated Larson hit him with a bat and bit him, according to a criminal complaint.

The couple’s child was in the apartment at the time, the complaint said.

Larson pleaded guilty to a gross misdemeanor domestic assault charge in exchange for the dismissal of the more serious count of second-degree assault, a felony. Judge Michelle Lawson sentenced Larson to 60 days in jail with credit for 48 days.

She had to be resentenced in that case to a year in jail after violating the terms of her parole when she gave police a false name in Clay County.

Larson also has a number of citations for drinking in public.

She was being held at the Cass County Jail as of Friday afternoon. An attorney had not been assigned to her as of publishing time.

April Baumgarten joined The Forum in February 2019 as an investigative reporter. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, N.D., where her family raises Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at the University of Jamestown, N.D.
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