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LOCKPORT – A North Tonawanda 17-year-old was promised youthful offender status Friday as he pleaded guilty in connection with the near-fatal stabbing of another teen during an Oct. 5 drinking party.

The boy, who was originally charged with attempted murder, pleaded guilty to attempted second-degree assault. Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas told him he could still go to prison for as long as four years despite the youthful offender ruling. Sentencing was set for June 6.

Police said the suspect was playing beer pong with a Lockport 17-year-old in a home on Hagen Avenue in North Tonawanda. After losing a round, the defendant got a 7-inch knife from the kitchen and stabbed the victim four times: twice on the top of the head, once in the back of the head and once in the upper shoulder near the neck.