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South Carolina man pleads guilty to Falls stabbing

LOCKPORT – A Spartanburg, S.C., man admitted Wednesday in Niagara County Court that he repeatedly stabbed a man in Niagara Falls on Sept. 21.

Earl L. Roberson Jr., 38, a former area resident who said he was in the Falls for a vacation, agreed to a plea deal that included a 10-year cap on his prison term. Judge Sara Sheldon will pass sentence April 7, and she held Roberson without bail in the meantime.

Roberson served 4 1/2 years for a 1995 robbery conviction in Erie County, and has served several sentences in South Carolina for felonies and misdemeanors, Assistant District Attorney Peter M. Wydysh said. Roberson told police he had been robbed in the Falls a couple of days before the stabbing, and thought the man he knifed looked like the robber.

While in the Falls, Roberson allegedly committed two other crimes, robbing a cab driver of $40 on Nov. 13, and cutting a woman on the finger during a Nov. 16 altercation, authorities said. He pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree assault, petit larceny and third-degree assault.