Steven C. Cummings was charged with misdemeanor unlawful use of the weapon in connection to the stabbing that occurred during a quarrel near Chicago Avenue and State Street at 5:35 p.m. Sunday.
Witnesses told police that they saw the 34-year-old woman "closely following" Cummings and begging for money numerous times. He kept telling her to leave him alone and "get out of my face." Her refusal prompted Cummings to pull a knife and stab her, police said.
The woman was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospial with a stab wound to her face and left side of her body, police said.
Near North District officers found Cummings a short time later and arrested him.
Investigators sought felony charges against Cummings, a downtown newsstand worker, but prosecutors declined, a police source said.
A representative from the Cook County state's attorney's office was unavailable for comment.