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Calif. nurse in critical condition after stabbing

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Two nurses were stabbed in separate, unrelated attacks at hospitals in Los Angeles county Sunday that left one of them critically injured, sheriff's officials said.

Around 2 a.m., a man bypassed the weapons screening area at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center in Sylmar and fled into the building, away from security and law enforcement officers, Lt. Denise Stephenson said in a statement.

As the officers searched the hospital, they heard a woman scream. When they found her, the nurse was stabbed several times in the torso.

The suspect, Romero Carnalla, 26, of Los Angeles was taken into custody and a knife was recovered as evidence, the statement said. He was booked for investigation of battery and assault with a deadly weapon.

The nurse was in critical condition at the hospital.

Later Sunday morning, authorities said a man walked into Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Torrance after clearing a weapons screening area. Once inside, he grabbed a nurse who was with a group of nurses and stabbed her in the ear with a sharp object. The nurse managed to free herself and ran away. She was treated at the hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

A pencil, believed to be the weapon used in the stabbing, was recovered at the scene.

The suspect, identified as 38-year-old Thomas Fredette of Santee, was arrested for investigation of assault with a deadly weapon.

Detectives were investigating the motive of both attacks, though there was no evidence to suggest they were related, Deputy Kim Manatt said.

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