CRIME

Florida Man Beat Pregnant Woman He Claimed Had The Coronavirus: Police

Officers said the 24-year-old suspect appeared intoxicated and kept ranting about COVID-19.

A Florida man is facing battery charges after he allegedly beat a pregnant woman he accused of having been infected by the coronavirus.

Joseph Newell, 24, was arrested on Monday after a Cape Coral police officer responding to a call allegedly saw him “straddling” the victim with his hands around her neck, according to a police report obtained by People.com.

The responding officer ordered Newell to stop, but he allegedly continued his attack.

Newell was taken into custody after officers applied a “pain compliance” technique to his neck. Officers said he appeared intoxicated, according to local NBC affiliate WBBH.

Officers also said Newell bashed his head into concrete while handcuffs were placed on him and also ranted about the coronavirus, which he accused his victim of having.

The victim, who police said is six months pregnant, was taken to a local hospital. It is unknown whether she and Newell knew each other.

Newell has been charged with one count of aggravated battery and remains in the Lee County Jail on $15,000 bail.

Joseph Newell is accused of beating a pregnant woman he accused of having the coronavirus.
Joseph Newell is accused of beating a pregnant woman he accused of having the coronavirus.

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