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Article updated: 4/8/2013 7:02 PM

Police: Man cut friend's throat, slashed his eyelids

By Mick Zawislak

A Milwaukee man was jailed on $1 million bond on several charges in connection with an attack on a friend who was found by Lake County Sheriff's police with a cut throat.

Michael Highsmith, 24, remained in the Lake County jail Monday on charges of attempted murder, aggravated battery with intent to do great bodily harm, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and armed robbery. He would need to post 10 percent, or $100,000, of the required bond to be released.

Sheriff's police said a passing driver saw Highsmith about 1 p.m. Sunday leaving a wooded area on Crawford Road, south of Route 173 in Old Mill Creek, with blood on him. The driver also saw the victim, a 66-year-old man from Genoa City, Wis., laying in the woods bleeding, police said.

The victim had a cut throat, bleeding on the brain, slashed eyelids, cut wrists, a dislocated shoulder and broken bones in the lower leg, police said. He remained at Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville on Monday with nonlife threatening injuries.

"He was pretty banged up," according to Sheriff's Police Sgt. Sara Balmes.

The victim was attacked outside the vehicle with a 1-inch knife that was part of a corkscrew bottle opener, Balmes said.

The victim's gold ring was found in Highsmith's possession, she said. A gold chain pulled off during the attack was found at the scene and the victim's wallet was found in the vehicle, she added.

Whether it was car trouble or some other problem, Highsmith was "having difficulty leaving the area," she said.

"We were able to get there before he left the area," she said.

Police said Highsmith told them he had known the victim for more than four years and admitted to attacking him and taking his jewelry.

"I would call them friends," Balmes said.

Where they were traveling from or to and what precipitated the attack are under investigation.

Highsmith is scheduled to appear in court May 7.

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