Jarred Ha stabbed a fellow University of Washington student following a dispute over a parking spot. He was waiting outside of a university residence when he confronted a woman about her frequent straddling of parking spaces. She punched him, and while defending himself she ended up on the ground. After bending down to help her up, he was attacked from behind by several of the woman’s friends. But things got really out of hand when Ha was assaulted by Graham Harper, who was initially praised for his coming to the “rescue” of the girls before he ended up stabbed by Ha’s karambit.
From Seattle Times:
Friends Shane Colburn and Elana Helfand, both UW students who were sober and had no connection to anyone involved in the fight, happened upon the scene as Ha tussled with the women. They saw the first woman fall to the ground and watched Ha walk away as “this other girl was punching and slapping him in the head,” said Colburn.
“He wasn’t hitting her back, more like blocking her strikes,” said Colburn, 22, who along with Helfand testified at Ha’s trial.
That’s when Harper came out of the house and went “full-on sprinting” after Ha, “yelling something to the effect of, ‘You never hit girls,’ ” Colburn said in an interview. “I remember being concerned this was escalating now — the way he was running was aggressive.”
From his vantage, Colburn said, he saw Harper grab Ha and repeatedly ram Ha into parked cars.
“I had my phone out and yelled to them I was going to call the cops,” said Colburn. “Graham was definitely bigger than Jarred.”
He looked away as he spoke with a 911 dispatcher, and when he looked back, Ha was gone and there was blood pooling at Harper’s feet. Colburn and Helfand tended to Harper and waited with him until the ambulance came.
Ha is not out of legal trouble however, he is facing a civil suit from Harper who responded to the verdict thusly:
“I believe there was a lot of legal manipulation. O.J. got off,” Harper said. “I still believe I was right and he was so, so wrong in hitting those girls.”
Harper’s legal team faces some heavy lifting. Not only did the jury clear Ha, they issued a special verdict:
…rendering a somewhat rare finding that Ha used lawful force to defend himself. That finding means he is eligible to be reimbursed by the state for the roughly $40,000 his family spent on his criminal defense.
We applaud Ha for standing up for himself against a drunken bully who was causing him grievous bodily-harm. Somewhat less applause for the friends who sat back with cell phones rather than step forward to their friend’s aid. However, we are pleased that Ha retains his freedom. We hope for a just disposition of the civil case as well.