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Battery Charge

By Jeff Terrill

Fort Wayne Reader


In Indiana, a person who touches his or her spouse in an angry manner resulting in pain within the presence of a child commits a Class D felony.

Meet Timothy. Heís not a real person. Timothy married Dee four years ago. They have two young children. With the holidays nearing, both have felt a bit more stressed than normal. It hasnít helped that both kids are sick and waking up throughout the night. Timothy and Dee havenít been sleeping well.

Timothy was expecting to pay for Christmas gifts with a bonus that he usually receives from his employer in December. Monday, Timothyís boss told all of the employees that he wasnít giving any bonuses this year. On his drive home Timothy started worrying. He wasnít sure he was going to be able to buy his wife the necklace that she had hinted about a few weeks earlier.

By the time Timothy arrived home he had worked himself into a bad mood. He pulled into his driveway and noticed his wifeís car stuck in the snow. Timothy parked and went inside his home. Dee was yelling at the kids and the kids were crying. Timothy started asking questions about why her car was blocking the driveway.

Dee was not in the mood. She reminded Timothy that her tires were old and had no traction. Timothy shouted back that her tires were fine. He grabbed her keys and told his wife that she didnít know how to drive in the snow. He started her car and tried to move it. Dee followed Timothy to the car. The kids were now outside.

Dee yelled at Timothy to get out of her car. Timothy rolled the window down to tell her to go back inside. Dee reached into the car to get her keys from the ignition. Timothy grabbed her arm trying to stop her. Tim started rolling up the window while pushing her arm out of the car.

Dee lost her footing on the slick snow and fell. Timothy jumped out of the car to help. Dee got up and went inside with the kids. Timothy went into the garage and grabbed a snow shovel. He returned to the car and began shoveling the snow away from the tires. He knew it was best if he stayed outside for a while.

A few minutes later while Timothy was still trying to get his wifeís car out of the driveway, a police officer approached. The officer advised that he received a call from a neighbor about a domestic disturbance. Timothy told the officer what happened and that his wife had slipped. The officer asked if anyone was inside. Timothy told the officer that his wife and children were inside.

Dee was reluctant to speak with the officer. She explained that Timothy had grabbed her arm and that she lost her balance. Dee confirmed that the children were present when Timothy grabbed her arm.

The officer returned to the driveway and arrested Timothy for battering his wife within the presence of his children. The officer told Timothy that he needed to keep his hands to himself. Timothy agreed. The officer went on to explain that the judge would order Timothy to not have any contact with his wife.

Tim will spend the holidays alone this year.


Jeff Terrill is a partner/shareholder with the law firm of Arnold Terrill Anzini, P.C. Mr. Terrill represents clients accused of crimes throughout northeast Indiana. You can contact Mr. Terrill with any questions or comments at his office at 260.420.7777 or via email at jterrill@fortwaynedefense.com. Learn more about his firm at www.fortwaynedefense.com. This article expressed opinions and observations of the author, is not intended as legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship between the author and the reader. Please consult a qualified attorney with any legal questions or issues you might have. Thank you.

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©2018 Fort Wayne Reader. All rights Reserved.