Slashing victim in serious condition

Undergoing another surgery Wednesday, this time to her liver and fractures, a woman allegedly attacked by her ex-boyfriend with a 24-inch sword remained in serious condition at a Reno hospital.

Family and friends of Susan Rizk, 37, said she was heavily sedated but awake at times Wednesday morning at Washoe Medical Center from wounds suffered Tuesday morning at her apartment along San Francisco Avenue in South Lake Tahoe.

Diane Watson traveled to Reno from Clearlake, Calif., on Tuesday night to stay with her younger sister.

"We want to thank the paramedics," Watson said. "They did an awesome job. And the cops too."

Watson, an emergency medical technician, said her sister was "opening her eyes and nodding her head for water." Rizk had bandages to both hands and had stitches and staples to close wounds, Watson said.

Steven Wasserman, 35, is being held at El Dorado County Jail on suspicion of attempted murder, one of five felonies. He's also being accused of violating a protection order, a misdemeanor, which ordered Wasserman to stay at least 100 yards from Rizk and avoid her San Francisco Avenue apartment.

Wasserman is the father of Rizk's 4-year-old daughter. The two adults were in family law court as recently as Monday when Wasserman was denied contact with Rizk, but not with his daughter.

He has not been officially charged by the district attorney's office. An arraignment, where Wasserman will hear the charges against him and enter a plea, could be today.

An account has been established at U.S. Bank at 2850 Lake Tahoe Blvd. in the name of Susan Rizk to help care for her 4-year-old girl daughter, Watson said. The girl was in the one-bedroom apartment where the attack took place but was not injured, authorities said. Other accounts might be established to help with medical expenses.


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