A state Department of Corrections worker upset about his pending divorce and his wife’s new boyfriend choked the woman unconscious and threatened to shoot her Monday, according to newly filed court papers.
Pierce County prosecutors today charged Charles Anthony Rodriguez, 33, with two counts of second-degree assault and one count each of unlawful imprisonment, felony harassment and attempting to elude a pursing police vehicle.
Prosecutors allege Rodriguez used a firearm in three of the counts, which would add extra time to any sentence he receives if convicted as charged.
Superior Court Judge pro-tem Sergio Armijo ordered Rodriguez jailed in lieu of $500,000 bail.
Tacoma police arrested Rodriguez Monday following a chase and standoff near Skyline Elementary School. They found a loaded 9 mm pistol in his car, court records show.
The trouble began about 10 p.m. Sunday when Rodriguez confronted his wife at her apartment. The couple is separated but live in units in the same apartment complex, court records show.
The argued “about her new boyfriend and the divorce,” the records state. Rodriguez’ 10-year-old daughter from a previous relationship and his and his wife’s 7-year-old son were inside the apartment at the time.
The argument continued until about 4 a.m. Monday when Rodriguez attacked his wife, choking her until she blacked out, court records show. She told detectives she woke up in another room and found her husband holding a gun, the records state.
“He pointed the gun at her and said he was going to kill her and then himself,” the records show.
His daughter came into the room crying, and he did not make good on his threat, the documents state.
His wife later got the kids ready for school, and Rodriguez rode along for the drop-off. He wife said she did not resist because she was afraid he might kill her, the records state.
Once at the school, the woman went inside and reported what had happened earlier that morning. Police were called. She was taken to a local hospital for treatment, and school officials locked down Skyline Elementary.
Rodriguez then drove off with his daughter still in the car. He later dropped her off with relatives. He also called other relatives to tell them he was going back to the school to get his son, the records show.
Police spotted his car and gave chase, but Rodriguez refused to stop – driving at speeds upwards of 60 mph – and avoided spike strips laid across one street by driving into oncoming traffic, the records state.
He eventually stopped but refused to leave his car for nearly 45 minutes. He eventually surrendered.
Rodriguez has been suspended from his job until his case is resolved.