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Man attacks praying wife with ax!

A 78-year-old Orange County, Calif., man has been charged with attempted murder after allegedly attacking his wife with an ax while she was praying.

Abdel Herbawi is being held at Orange County Jail in lieu of $1 million bail. He was scheduled to be arraigned Friday on charges including torture, domestic battery and aggravated assault. If convicted, he could face life in prison, Deputy District Attorney Dawn Vargas said.

Herbawi's 68-year-old wife, whose name was withheld, was treated at UCI Medical Center in Orange, Calif., for multiple stab wounds and cuts, a severed finger and a fractured skull. A spokeswoman for the district attorney's office said the injuries were not life-threatening.

"It's certainly a bit unusual in terms of the situation as we know it and the age of the perpetrator and victim," Vargas said.

The attack occurred about 6:45 a.m. Monday, authorities said, apparently set off by an argument the couple had had the previous day. The woman said that, as she sat in a chair praying, Herbawi came up from behind and hit her on the head with the ax, authorities said. He is accused of then pushing her to the ground and stabbing her with a knife.

The woman ran to a neighbor's house, where she called police. Officers found that Herbawi also had apparently stabbed himself, a police spokeswoman said. He was taken to a hospital, where he was treated and released into police custody, authorities said.

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