June 21, 2018
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Pregnant woman attacked in Bangor undergoes 3 surgeries, according to police

Joshua Cole
By Nok-Noi Ricker, BDN Staff

BANGOR, Maine — A 41-year-old pregnant woman who was brutally beaten at an apartment on Essex Street early Monday was taken to a Boston hospital where she underwent three surgeries, Bangor police Sgt. Tim Cotton said Tuesday.

The woman was found by police lying in a hallway of the apartment house at 210 Essex St. after they received a report of a family fight. The Bangor Daily News is not naming the woman because she is believed to be a crime victim.

The man police say attacked her, Josh Cole, 34, was arrested and is facing multiple felony assault charges, Cotton said.

“She was taken to [Massachusetts] General,” Cotton said, noting the woman is several months into her pregnancy. “Detective [Josh] Kuhn has contacted her today and she has had three surgeries.”

Both the woman and her fetus are expected to survive, Cotton said. Investigators have learned that there was some sort of relationship between the woman and Cole.

“She was possibly staying with him but through interviews we have learned that the child was not his,” Cotton said.

“She’s stable, but I know she’s in for the long haul [because of her injuries],” he said later, declining to release medical details.

The woman was able to speak to police and “to tell them what occurred and how it had occurred,” Cotton said.

There is no history of police calls involving the woman and Cole at the apartment building, but police were called to the apartment building earlier in the night.

“We went to that residence three hours prior,” Cotton said. “Actually, it was a disturbance in the street. They spoke to him [Cole] on the porch. There was nothing there, so they left. They got called back three hours later.”

At first Cole refused to leave his apartment or speak with police, except to “yell from the interior of his apartment,” Cotton said in a press release issued Monday.

Bangor police’s Special Response Team and crisis negotiators were called in just before 4 a.m., but before they could start negotiations, Cole opened his door and an officer used a Taser on him, Cotton said.

Two other people at the apartment building were injured trying to help the woman, the sergeant said.

“They came out to assist the victim and became victims themselves,” Cotton said. “First she attempted to assist and was injured and her husband, or the man with her, attempted to assist and he was also attacked. They ended up having to retreat because he [Cole] was so enraged.”

Cole was charged with elevated aggravated assault on a pregnant person, which is a Class A crime that carries a penalty of up to 30 years in prison, and Class B aggravated assault. The Class B assault was on a witness who tried to stop the initial assault, the sergeant said. Cole also faces a charge of simple assault on another witness who attempted to intervene.

Cole remains at Penobscot County Jail on Tuesday afternoon and is scheduled to make his first court appearance on Wednesday, a jail official said.


Correction: A previous version of this story erroneously stated that the victim was reported to be in the late stages of her pregnancy. She is reported to be several months into her pregnancy.

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