PATERSON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A pastor on trial for stabbing his longtime mistress has been convicted of attempted murder.

The Record reported a jury returned the verdict Friday. Rev. Edward Fairley, of Paterson, maintained that he stabbed his longtime mistress, but did not intend to kill her.

The newspaper reported he testified he could not recall the stabbing.

Fairley tried to persuade a jury to convict him of aggravated manslaughter rather than attempted murder, which can carry a longer prison term.

He acted as his own lawyer.

Authorities say Fairley stabbed Simone Shields-Oliver 28 times in 2011 as she prepared to marry another man. Shields-Oliver, who is also a minister, survived but can’t walk without using a cane.

Fairley could face up to 20 years in prison.

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