Gary Baxter

Baxter

An Idaho Falls man was arrested Tuesday after a woman reported he had choked her to stop her from screaming for help.

The victim’s boss called police after she came to work covered in bruises. An Idaho Falls Police Department officer interviewed the victim, who said Gary William Baxter, 51, had choked her the night before.

The victim said she had wanted to leave Baxter for years but was unable to do so due to a lack of financial independence. She said they had argued Monday night, and Baxter became physical, getting on top of her and using his knees to pin her shoulders.

Baxter reportedly held the victim down by her throat and covered her mouth when she began yelling for him to stop. The victim said she couldn’t breathe and thought she would lose consciousness.

The victim said Baxter regularly abused her and that he had a drinking problem.

The officer observed bruises around her neck and took pictures to record them as evidence. He wrote that the victim also complained of bruising on her chest.

Two officers met with Baxter to hear his side of the story. Baxter denied choking the victim, saying he only held her down because she was attempting to hit him. The officers observed several scratch marks on his arms and forehead. Baxter said they were caused by his dog.

Baxter was charged with attempted strangulation, punishable with up to 15 years in prison. His bond was set at $20,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. March 27 in Bonneville County Courthouse.

Reporter Johnathan Hogan can be reached at 208-542-6746.

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