Attorney: Man plans to claim self-defense in Monroe roommate stabbing death case

Peyton McFarland BUTLER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
Peyton McFarland BUTLER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

A trial date has been set for a Monroe man who is accused of stabbing his roommate to death on May 30.

Peyton Michael Joseph McFarland, 20, of the 100 block of Sands Avenue, was arrested on May 31 and charged with murder. McFarland is charged with murder and felonious assault for the slaying of Christopher Hacker, 31. He is being held in the Butler County Jail in lieu of a $1 million bond.

ExploreMonroe man accused of fatally stabbing roommate during argument

According to court records and the 911 call, McFarland confessed to stabbing Hacker during an argument.

McFarland was in Butler County Common Pleas Court last week, and Judge Jennifer McElfresh set the trial for Jan. 11.

Defense attorney Frank Schiavone IV said evidence expected to be presented a trial includes a self-defense expert and testimony about the drugs Hacker had in his system at the time of death.

“The alleged victim tested positive for drugs of abuse,” said Schiavone, who added it is a case of self-defense.

In the 911 call, McFarland identifies himself to the dispatcher in a strained, out-of-breath voice.

“I need an ambulance,” he says in the call. “I attacked a person that I was living with, I need an officer to come and arrest me.”

In the 911 calls, McFarland says he used a weapon and stabbed Hacker in the shoulder. Hacker ran from the scene, according to McFarland, who told dispatchers he put the weapon on the ground outside and said he would lie down and wait for officers.

ExploreMonroe man accused of fatally stabbing roommate during argument

A woman called 911 from a neighboring residence and told dispatchers a man approached her and said that “he has been stabbed with a knife, he is bleeding. He needs an ambulance.”

Hacker was taken to Atrium Medical Center, where he died.

Monroe police said McFarland told investigators he went into his room and retrieved a knife/axe combination weapon, then confronted Hacker in the hallway.

“When the roommate disarmed him of the axe, (McFarland) stated he stabbed him with the knife portion of the weapon combo,” a detective wrote in the court complaint.

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