As a James Island woman spoke with a 911 dispatcher Wednesday, a bleeding boy in her house relayed his account of what had just happened.
The woman had called for help after the 10-year-old boy, bleeding from cuts on his neck and his wrist, showed up at her Howle Avenue home.
"He said his grandmother was trying to kill him," the caller, Lyndsay Gianoli, told the dispatcher.
In a faint voice from the background, the boy described his escape.
"I got one knife from her, and I threw it in the ditch," he said.
Authorities on Thursday released a copy of the 911 call that eventually led them to the body of his grandmother, 58-year-old Paula Peeples O'Neal. They also released an incident report stating that she had been stabbed several times.
Still, little is known about the circumstances surrounding her death.
The Charleston County Sheriff's Office has said that the two got into some sort of altercation and that one of them got a knife. But investigators had not confirmed who had brought the knife into the fight. No one else was home at the time, they said.
An autopsy was scheduled for Thursday afternoon that might help explain some things in the complicated case, Deputy Coroner Brittney Martin said.
The boy was not labeled as a suspect or a victim in the report. The document indicated that O'Neal had been stabbed, but the Charleston County Coroner's Office had not confirmed the cause or manner of her death.
Coroner Rae Wooten planned to discuss those findings during a news conference late Friday morning, Martin said.
O'Neal's grandson, whom she and her husband cared for in their home at 349A Howle Ave., was treated for knife wounds at Medical University Hospital. None of the injuries were considered life-threatening.
Sheriff's Maj. Eric Watson said that the S.C. Department of Social Services has gotten involved in the case but that he could not comment on certain aspects of the investigation that could "shed some light on the initial findings."
In the 911 call, Gianoli, 35, spoke with the dispatcher for nearly eight minutes.
She had asked the other children in her home, including her 4-year-old son, to play in another room as she used towels in an attempt to stop the boy's bleeding.
"He's starting to look faint," Gianoli said. "I'm getting him to sit down."
But he was doing well despite the circumstances, she said.
"For his condition, he seems fairly alert," Gianoli said.
Gianoli knew the boy from times when he would play with her son and other children in the neighborhood southwest of Folly Road and Maybank Highway.
The curly-haired boy was shown on O'Neal's Facebook page eating watermelon, hanging out at a fair and feeding a pony. The page also featured a recent picture of the new sneakers O'Neal bought for her regular strolls with her two dogs.
Gianoli often saw O'Neal on those walks, but she did not know the woman well, she said.
When the boy told her Wednesday that he had been attacked, Gianoli locked her front door.
"When he ran away from her, she was still in the house," Gianoli told the dispatcher.
She tried to calm the boy.
"I'm glad you got away from her, OK?" she said during the call. "Everything's going to be OK."
The boy's grandfather, Richard O'Neal, 55, had been across the street during the stabbing episode, according to the sheriff's report.
After paramedics and a Charleston police officer arrived at Gianoli's house, the boy's grandfather walked up to some firefighters and alerted them to what he had found when he came home, a police report stated.
The officers soon found his wife's body lying in a back bedroom.
Reach Andrew Knapp at 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.
Crime-scene investigators from the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office work the scene of a stabbing on Howle Avenue on James Island where a woman was killed and her grandson, 10, was stabbed Wednesday after an argument.×
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