• Suspect bites off part of man's face at Memphis music studio

    By: Ben Rainwater

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - A Memphis man is accused of biting a chunk out of a security guard’s face after breaking into a local music studio.

    The story sounds like something out of a horror movie. It features creepy text messages, a sudden knock at the door, and an alleged attack by a stranger.

    Cortlandt Northcross is charged with aggravated assault and burglary. He was arrested after an incident at Cooper Young music studio on March 14.

    When officers arrived to the music studio, they saw the suspect, Northcross, sitting outside talking on a cell phone. When police began talking to him, the victim ran out of the front door with his face covered in blood. He was screaming that the suspect broke into the business and attacked him, according to a police affidavit.


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    Officers said Northcross uttered, “I did…I broke into the f***ing house.” He claimed to own the property because the previous owner left it to him.

    The victim told police he works overnight security for the business. He said Northcross came in two days before the attack and said he was homeless. According to the affidavit, the victim gave the man some beef jerky and allowed him to stay until he began talking to himself.

    Northcross came back the next day, but the victim didn’t allow him inside.

    The day of the attack, the victim began getting strange text messages from an unknown number. He copied a signature from the texts into a Google search, which led him to an Instagram profile that looked like it belonged to the suspect, according to police.

    In the messages, the sender claimed to own the property that houses the music studio. There were also threats to kill the victim and police, if they were called, according to the affidavit.

    The messages finally stopped, and the security guard fell asleep on the couch. He woke up to someone banging on the door.

    Seconds later, a window shattered and the suspect crawled into the business. The victim ran upstairs and locked himself in a room.

    After several minutes, the victim went downstairs because he thought the suspect was gone. He was wrong, and the attack ensued, according to police documents.

    The two men fell onto the floor, at which point the suspect began biting the victim’s face, chest and stomach, police said. The victim was eventually able to get up and force the suspect out the front door.

    “I could hear his teeth grinding against the side of my skin while he’s doing it,” said Crafton Barnes. “The cops found a huge chunk of my cheek on the floor at the crime scene.” 

    Officers noted that the victim had a “gaping wound” on his left cheek and multiple bite wounds to his chest and torso.

    Inside the business, police found blood and “what appeared to be the missing chunk of the victim’s cheek” on the floor.

    The victim was taken to the hospital in non-critical condition. Northcross was arrested.

    A GoFundMe was created to help cover Crafton Barnes' medical expenses. 

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