A local man is facing charges of attempted second-degree murder after he allegedly hit his wife in the back of the head with a hatchet last month.
Authorities say Michael Newcomb, 43, of Dillon Valley East, attacked his wife of two weeks with the hatchet and a metal pipe they used as a doorstop, fracturing her skull, during a fight Jan. 31.
He is also charged with second-degree assault with a deadly weapon and two counts of felony menacing.
"The charges are very serious, and, if convicted, the accused would mandatorily go to prison," District Attorney Bruce Brown stated in a release. "Acts of violence will be vigorously prosecuted."
Newcomb is currently in custody at the Summit County Jail on a $7,500 bond.
The incident was first reported by one of the couple's neighbors, who
reportedly heard a scuffle and went to investigate. Hearing the victim screaming for help, the neighbor knocked on the door until Newcomb opened it. Seeing the victim inside obviously injured, the neighbor called the police.
An arrest affidavit stated the fight started earlier in the evening when Newcomb threatened to kill the victim and her mother. The victim left the house for a period of time, but when she returned, Newcomb reportedly began arguing with her again, accusing her of cheating on him.
The victim reportedly told police Newcomb got in her face and she pushed him away. He then hit her in the face. When she fell to the ground, he began kicking her around the head and shoulders, the affidavit states.
He allegedly then grabbed the hatchet, hitting her once in the back of the head. She was able to protect herself from a second blow, according to the affidavit. Newcomb then hit the victim with the metal doorstop in the front of the head.
If convicted, Newcomb could face up to 32 years in prison for the attempted murder charge. Second-degree assault with a deadly weapon, a class 3 felony, also carries a penalty of up to 32 years in prison. Each of the menacing counts carries a sentence of up to six years in prison.
Newcomb is set to appear in court for a preliminary hearing Feb. 19.
Officials with the district attorney's office noted that the charges are accusations only, and Newcomb is innocent until proven guilty.