(CNN) — A West Virginia woman awoke from a two-year coma and identified her brother as the assailant in an incident in June 2020, according to police.
Wanda Palmer, 51, accused her brother of attacking her at their residence near Cottageville, West Virginia, in what police describe as “attacked, slashed and left for dead,” according to a release posted on the Facebook of the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.
Police say they found Palmer in an “upright position” on his sofa inside his home with serious injuries caused by what appeared to be an ax-type weapon. Jackson County Sheriff Ross Mellinger told CNN that when police arrived at the scene she “thought she was dead” but realized shortly after that she was still alive showing shallow breathing.
Police never recovered the gun used in the attack, Mellinger added.
A witness said he saw Palmer’s brother, Daniel, on the front porch of the house around midnight the night before he was discovered, Mellinger said. There were no phone records, surveillance footage or eyewitnesses outside Palmer’s home at the time of the attack, the sheriff said.
Despite multiple investigations into persons of interest in this case, police were never able to bring charges against an individual until Palmer recovered to the point of speaking a couple of weeks ago, Mellinger explained. That’s when Mellinger said her office got a call from the Palmer call center saying she was able to talk to police.
Palmer was only able to answer yes or no questions with investigators, but he provided police with enough testimony to have his brother Daniel arrested, Mellinger told CNN.
Daniel Palmer III, 55, was arrested and charged with attempted murder and willful injury on Friday, July 15, according to arrest records obtained by CNN.
He was arraigned on $500,000 bail, according to the Jackson County sheriff, who said he did not know how he pleaded to the charges.
CNN was unable to identify an attorney for Palmer at this time, but has contacted the Jackson County Public Defender’s office for details on legal representation.
It is still unclear what Wanda Palmer’s current medical status is, but she is now consistent and understands where she is. However, she is unable to hold full conversations, the Jackson County sheriff told CNN.