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Dave Roepke, Published January 12 2011

'Soul collector' charged with attempted murder after allegedly trying to cut off toes, scalp of Fergus Falls neighbor

FERGUS FALLS, MINN. - A self-described soul collector and medicine man is charged with assault and attempted murder. Timothy Eugene Peterson, 42, is accused of trying to cut off the toes and scalp of a neighbor in Fergus Falls, Minn.

According to court records:

The alleged victim, Ivan Mallas, told police the man living three houses north of him - Peterson - came to his home on Sunday evening holding a knife in one hand and, in the other hand, a two-liter of Coke that may have had alcohol in it.

Mallas told officers that Peterson said he was there to kill him and take his soul as a souvenir. He told Mallas he’d previously killed 13 people and referred to himself as a soul collector and medicine man, Mallas told police.

After informing Mallas of his intent, Peterson tried to cut off Mallas’ toes, Mallas later told cops.

When he resisted, Peterson turned the blade to his hairline and told him he was going to scalp him before holding the knife to Mallas’ throat, according to the criminal complaint filed Tuesday.

Mallas grabbed the knife and there was a struggle, police say in court records.

“I believe he was trying to kill me and it took everything to defend myself,” Mallas later told police.

When arrested a short time later at his home, Peterson admitted Mallas’ blood was on him but said, “We were just wrestling.”