Man Receives Prison Time For Stabbing

Claremont Resident Sentenced For Walmart Parking Lot Incident

Newport — A Claremont man was sentenced to 3 1/2 years to seven years in New Hampshire State Prison yesterday after pleading guilty in Sullivan County Superior Court to stabbing a man with a box cutter in the Walmart parking lot in January.

Eric Sanborn, 25, who was on parole from a 2007 conviction, which also involved a stabbing, was sentenced under a plea agreement with the Sullivan County Attorney’s office. Sanborn also pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a deadly weapon and was given a suspended 3 1/2 to seven year sentence. The original charge was first-degree assault.

With his ankles shackled, Sanborn quietly answered “yes” to a long list of questions from Judge Brian Tucker. When asked if he had anything further to say, Sanborn responded “no.”

“The sentences just keep getting longer,” Tucker said to Sanborn, referring to his earlier convictions on two, first-degree assault charges. “It is not too late to turn things around but you better do it quickly. This will be over your head for 10 years.”

Sanborn’s attorney, Joseph Frankel from the public defender’s office in Keene, said in court the agreement was “the right resolution to the case.”

Sullivan County Attorney Marc Hathaway told Judge Tucker that the victim in the case, Peter Ilnicki, supported the agreement.

Sanborn was also ordered to pay restitution to Peter Ilnicki and Kristine Lohman of $1,178 and another $974 to Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield along with administrative fees.

In court, Hathaway read from the affidavit from Claremont Police Cpl. Brent Wilmot. Police were called to the Walmart around 6 p.m. on Jan. 7 and when they arrived they saw two men fighting in the parking lot near the grocery side of the store. Some bystanders pointed to Sanborn, who was shirtless, and said “It’s that guy,” according to the affidavit.

Police chased Sanborn and took him into custody, then interviewed several people at the scene, including Peter Ilnicki, who was stabbed in the chest but not seriously injured, and his brothers, Joseph Ilnicki and Nicholas Lohman, who was fighting with Sanborn when police arrived.

According to those involved, the incident began inside the store with another group of people who were using inappropriate language and Joseph Ilnicki said he asked them to “curb their inappropriate behavior.” Neither group knew each other and Sanborn was not inside the store.

When they left the store the “trash talking” continued in the parking lot, according to Joseph Ilnicki, and Sanborn joined the fray. At one point, the Ilnickis and Lohman began to walk away but were chased by Sanborn.

Peter Ilnicki said “Sanborn pushed him in the area of the chest.” Though he never saw a knife, which was recovered at the scene, Ilnicki said when he lifted his shirt he saw blood and discovered he was stabbed.

At Sanborn’s probable cause hearing in January, Claremont Police Sgt. Stanley Andrewski said that two people with Sanborn, Amber Kinney and her bother Cody Kinney, both saw him reach for the knife in his pocket while Ilnicki and his brothers were walking away.

“The three were walking away and Mr. Sanborn appeared then to reach for the knife and she (Amber) told him not do to it. Telling him not to do that. Something with the knife, ” Andrewski testified.

Conditions of Sanborn’s sentence include no contact with the Ilnickis, Lohman or any of their family members and he must participate in counseling and treatment programs

Patrick O’Grady can be reached at