June 25, 2018
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Police: Warren man attempted to strangle wife

By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff

ROCKLAND, Maine — A Warren man remains at the Knox County Jail after being arrested Monday afternoon, accused of attempting to strangle his wife.

Justin S. Ireland, 32, was charged with domestic violence assault.

Ireland made his initial court appearance Wednesday afternoon in Rockland District Court, where Judge Patricia Worth set bail at $1,500 cash and required him to enter into a contract with Maine Pretrial Services before he can be released from the Knox County Jail.

The victim in the case called police Monday afternoon, according to an affidavit filed by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office in court. When the officer arrived, she said Ireland had assaulted her the previous night but that she had not had an opportunity to call police until he left to go for a car ride.

The woman said she, Ireland and three children had gone to the Windsor Fair Sunday night and everything appeared to be fine but that when they got home, he began complaining about her two children. He became increasingly agitated until he threw her on the couch and tried strangling her with his hands, according to the police affidavit.

The officer noticed red marks in the shape of fingers on her neck, according to the affidavit.

A neighbor told the officer Monday that one of the children had come running over to her home the previous night to say that Ireland was choking her mother. The woman went over and said everything seemed OK but allowed the two older children to stay overnight at her place while a 15-month-old stayed with Ireland and the woman. The officer asked the neighbor why she didn’t call police but said he got no good answer, according to the affidavit.

The affidavit also stated that the victim was not cooperative and said she simply wanted him not to be allowed to remain at the home.

Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Baroody said Ireland has eight prior criminal convictions, including an aggravated assault in 2004 for which he was sentenced to seven years in jail. Ireland also had assault convictions in 1999 and 2011.

Defense attorney William Pagnano asked for lower bail, saying that Ireland is a longtime resident of the area and is employed at a local boatyard.

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