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Police & Fire News

April 16, 2014

Jeffersonville man arrested for attacking wife with a shovel

Suspect is being held on a $100,000 bond

JEFFERSONVILLE — A man was arrested Tuesday after witnesses claim he beat his wife with a shovel.

Russell B. Howard, 27, Pratt Street, is being held in the Clark County jail under a $100,000 court-cash bond.

Jeffersonville police were called to the home about 4 p.m. Tuesday by a neighbor. According to the police report, the responding officer found a shovel in the front yard and while approaching the home,

“A next door neighbor attempted to interfere with our duties and yelled at us to ‘do our job’ because he was tired of calling the police,” the report reads.

Police found the home’s front door had been forced open and heard “screaming and the sounds of distress coming from inside the residence,” according to the report.

The officer entered the home and placed a man, later identified as Howard, at gunpoint. Howard was ordered to the floor, made to crawl toward police and was taken into custody.

In a bedroom, Howard’s wife was found with her head bleeding. She told police her injuries, including a cut to her arm, had come from Howard, her husband of three weeks, striking her repeatedly with a shovel. Howard and his wife said they had each been drinking and arguing over narcotics. Howard said his wife’s injuries came from her accidentally striking herself with the shovel as the two wrestled.

Howard was not found with any injuries, police reported.

“I asked him if he had any injuries, and the only thing I observed on him was bloody palm print on his forehead he attributed to his wife,” according to he report.

A witness told police Howard was seen striking his wife on the head with the shovel, as he stood behind her on the porch area.

A second witness said the wife was seen “ ... curled up in a fetal position with Russell Howard standing over her swinging a shovel,” according to the report.

Howard has been preliminarily charged with class B felony aggravated battery and domestic battery. He is expected to be officially charged during an initial hearing in Clark County Circuit Court No. 1 on May 21.

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