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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

[TX] Grand jury clears SAPD Officer Ragland but indicts his wife Stephanie after hearing from a witness in the house

A Bexar County grand jury that did not indict a San Antonio police officer [Troy Ragland] accused of choking his wife did, however, return an indictment on her for allegedly assaulting him, court documents show... "A witness in the home didn't corroborate her story, and it's apparent that the grand jury didn't find the evidence against him was credible," First Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg said...

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NEWS FROM DECEMBER 2009 AND THIS MONTH:

COP'S WIFE SAYS HE TRIED TO STRANGLE HER
San Antonio Express-News
By Brian Chasnoff
Web Posted: 12/05/2009 12:00 CST
[Excerpts] A San Antonio police officer has been arrested and accused of choking his wife at the couple's Universal City home. Troy Eric Ragland, 44, a former driver for Police Chief William McManus, was charged Thursday with assault-family violence. Booked at 3:24 p.m., he was released 15 minutes later on $10,000 bail. His wife “alleged that he tried to strangle her,” Universal City police Lt. Fernando Parra said. “There was evidence to support the charge he was arrested for”... Parra would not provide further details, and a narrative in a police report listed only the charge and location of the incident. Stephanie Lisa Ragland, 46, called police to her home in the 8500 block of Park Olympia around 11 a.m. Thursday. Authorities arrested Troy Ragland, a 12-year member of SAPD, and confiscated two pistols... First Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg said a change in state law on Sept. 1 made it a third-degree felony to assault a relative with strangulation or suffocation... Previously, a family violence charge was a misdemeanor unless a victim suffered a serious injury, he said. “The defense will argue that putting your hand over someone's mouth and preventing them from breathing is not an injury. So this is in response to that,” Herberg said. “The law now recognizes that that is a traumatic, horrifying event”... [Full article here]

OFFICER CLEARED BUT WIFE INDICTED IN DISPUTE
San Antonio Express-News
Michelle Mondo
Apr 15, 2010. pg. B.3
[Excerpts] A Bexar County grand jury that did not indict a San Antonio police officer [Troy Ragland] accused of choking his wife did, however, return an indictment on her for allegedly assaulting him, court documents show... Nearly four months later, he essentially has been cleared of the charge, with the internal affairs investigation completed, the department's Action Advisory Board finding the accusations "unfounded" and the grand jury not indicting him, according to the Police Department and the Bexar County district attorney's office. "A witness in the home didn't corroborate her story, and it's apparent that the grand jury didn't find the evidence against him was credible," First Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg said... The case against Ragland's wife, whose maiden name is Huff, developed from the San Antonio police internal investigation, Herberg said. On March 31, the grand jury returned an indictment against Stephanie Lisa Huff, 47, and an arrest warrant has been issued for a misdemeanor assault-family violence charge, according to court records. According to the indictment, during an incident in September 2009, she struck her husband with a full pack of batteries... Officials said police had been called to the Ragland home before the December incident but only for verbal arguments. The couple was married in April 1988 but stopped living together in October 2009, when Troy Ragland filed for divorce... Universal City police Detective Tina Vitacco investigated the case against Troy Ragland and said that while Stephanie Ragland was visibly upset when police responded, it wasn't immediately clear that her husband had been physically violent. Vitacco said when officers arrived, a CD/DVD stand was knocked over and Stephanie Ragland told officers her husband strangled her, adding that he put red marks on her neck and a bruise on her knee. "I took pictures of her knee," Vitacco said. "I took pictures of her neck. I didn't see any injuries, but we document where someone claims she had an injury." Vitacco said her department wanted to do "everything by the book" on the case, which is why Troy Ragland was arrested at the scene and the case was forwarded to the district attorney. Herberg said the district attorney's office sent both cases - that of Troy Ragland and that of his wife - to the grand jury to quell any rumors of favoritism because Troy Ragland is a police officer... Troy Ragland returned to duty April 2, according to the department. [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence (IPV) abuse law enforcement public safety texas state female]

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