POCATELLO — A local man has been charged with aggravated assault after he allegedly hit another man in the head several times with an ax handle.
In addition to the initial charge, the Bannock County Prosecutor’s Office intends to pursue a deadly weapon enhancement against 52-year-old Curtis Tyler Green, according to charging documents.
Officers from the Pocatello Police Department were dispatched to a home on the 1800 block of North Arizona Drive around 10 a.m. Friday following calls reporting a disturbance, according to an affidavit of probable cause. While en route, police were informed that the suspect, Green, was known by the reporting party to be “mentally unstable,” drunk and in possession of a weapon.
When officers arrived, they found a man standing outside the house with blood “streaming down his face.” The victim’s girlfriend told officers that Green was inside the home.
Officers told the victim and witness to wait inside a truck parked in the driveway until officers could confirm that Green was no longer armed.
As officers approached the home, Green came out the front door. He wasn’t seriously hurt, according to police reports. Officers searched him and determined he was unarmed.
Green told officers that he was tired of being bullied by the victim. He said that mental and physical abuse had occurred over an extended period of time. The victim, he added, had attempted to bring packages belonging to the neighbor into the home, which triggered the fight.
Green told officers he insisted the victim not bring someone else’s property into the home. The victim responded, “I want to f***ing punch you in the face,” Green said, according to police reports.
The victim then approached Green with his hands out, saying “hugs, hugs.” Green said he felt threatened by the action and raised an ax handle he was carrying, pointed it at the victim and used it to push him away.
Green’s explanation about how he got the ax handle wasn’t clear.
As the victim continued forward, Green said he swung it, hitting the victim in the head four to six times. Green told officers that while he felt threatened, the victim did not raise his hands or ball his fists. He could not tell officers what specifically made him feel unsafe, the affidavit says.
After speaking with Green, officers attempted to speak with the victim, who was waiting for EMS. He was described as being “extremely unsteady” and wandering in a state of confusion.
When EMS arrived, the victim was briefly examined. They informed officers that he would require stitches for several wounds to his head, along with examination for concussion and a potentially fractured arm.
The victim refused transportation to the hospital, saying he would seek private care instead.
In speaking with the homeowner and the witness, officers were provided with details differing from Green’s account.
The homeowner told officers that Green had a history of anger, aggression and abuse. She had attempted to evict Green several times, she said, and each time was met with battery, resulting in bruises. She told officers that the victim, who was regularly at the residence, arrived early, “when it was dark” out, and was loud enough to wake everyone in the home.
This angered Green, she said.
In order to deal with the anger, she asked the victim to “put (Green) in his place.” She told officers that the victim, who was friendly with Green, was especially capable of calming Green down.
The witness told officers the victim was often summoned to the home in order to calm Green down.
During an argument between Green and the homeowner, the victim approached Green and hugged the home owner. He then turned to Green with his hands out and said “hugs, hugs.” That was when he lifted the ax handle.
The home owner told officers that she had gone to her room to wait it out, but returned to the living room after she heard a commotion. She said she saw Green standing over the victim, who was laying on the couch.
The ax handle used in the alleged attack was found laying near the same couch.
Green was arrested and taken to Bannock County Jail where he is being held on a $25,000 bond.
Officers confirmed the following day that the victim had received stitches and was treated for a broken arm.
Due to the severity of the attack, the Bannock County Prosecutor’s Office will seek a deadly weapon enhancement against Green. If he is found guilty, Green would face up to 15 years in prison and as much as $50,000 in fines for the aggravated battery. The enhancement would carry with it an additional 15 years in prison.
Green is scheduled to appear in court for a preliminary hearing on Dec. 27.