Jamie Sniffen, of Cortlandt, N.Y., was arrested Monday, Feb. 18, 2013, after her boyfriend stabbed and pistol-whipped a man with whom she was having an affair.
(Photo: The (Westchester County, N.Y.) Journal News)
Shawn Cohen, (The Westchester County, N.Y.) Journal New
CORTLANDT, N.Y. -- A woman cheating on her live-in lover said she accidentally pocket-dialed him from the other man's home, triggering a bloody pre-dawn battle after her boyfriend tracked them down.
Jamie Sniffen, 39, held back a charging pitbull and watched as the two men fought, her boyfriend stabbing and pistol whipping her obese paramour, who came at him with a stereo speaker.
Monday's bizarre melee ended with two arrests -- and both men in the hospital.
STORY: Cops: Man stabbed in fracas over girlfriend
But as Sniffen acknowledged, it started with her, after she snuck out on her boyfriend as he slept and took a taxi to meet up with longtime acquaintance Lawrence Graff.
"It all started by my being there," she said during an interview Tuesday at the home she shares with Allen Slavin, 37. "I shouldn't have been there."
Her next mistake came when she sat on her cellphone.
"I accidentally called Al," Sniffen said. "He heard me and Larry talking over the phone. He heard everything."
Slavin knew Graff, even considered him a friend. He took a taxi to Graff's home a few miles away. After his girlfriend let him inside, Slavin demanded answers.
"I was honest with Al, but Larry kept denying everything," she said.
The two men started arguing, prompting Graff's dog, Simba, to defend his master.
"The dog started going ballistic," Sniffen said. "I was holding him by the collar."
She said her boyfriend grabbed a knife and pellet gun to protect himself against Simba. He threatened the dog, Sniffen said, and she placed Simba in Graff's bedroom.
The fight escalated when, she said, Graff grabbed a three-foot-tall speaker and struck her knife-wielding boyfriend, causing him to accidentally slash himself in the wrist. He then, police say, stabbed Graff and pistol-whipped him over the head.
Slavin then ran off to dispose of the gun in the woods, while his girlfriend cleaned up the blood, police said. After her boyfriend returned, the couple washed his wound in a gas station bathroom, leaving Graff behind.
Graff called 911 shortly after 5 a.m. Police found him sitting in a chair in his bedroom. An ambulance took him to Westchester Medical Center, where he underwent surgery and was later released.
Later in the day, police found Slavin and Sniffen together at their home in Seven Oaks. Slavin was treated in a hospital for his wrist wound, then charged with second-degree assault, a felony. Sniffen was also arrested, charged with misdemeanor hindering prosecution because, police said, she tried to wash the crime scene.
Sniffen, however, said she was merely trying to clean up the mess.
"It was all over the place," she said. "I wasn't going to leave Larry with all that blood."
Besides, she said, most of the blood came from her boyfriend's wrist. She claimed Graff was barely bleeding.
"Evidently, Al punctured Larry's liver," she said. "I don't understand how that could happen because Larry is huge. He's like 600 pounds."
Police released Sniffen on an appearance ticket. On Tuesday afternoon, as she stood in her apartment smoking a cigarette, she defended her boyfriend, claiming his actions were in self-defense.
"Larry has a lot of nerve pressing charges," she said. "The only reason Al had the knife and gun was because of Larry's dog. And Larry picked up the speaker and hit Al. Al hit him back with the pellet gun."
"It takes two to tango," she added.
She said she's now struggling to raise the $5,000 bail to get her boyfriend out of jail.