By: Patti Weaver
(Stillwater, Okla.) — A Cushing man accused of choking his girlfriend and hitting her in the head has been ordered to appear in court on Feb. 3 when he can seek a preliminary hearing on his felony count alleging strangulation.
If convicted of putting the woman in a choke hold, Herbert Joe Fox III, 26, could be given a prison term of one to three years plus a $3,000 fine. If convicted of the misdemeanor count of hitting the woman in the head, Fox could be given as much as a one-year jail term and a $5,000 fine.
Fox was originally charged with only a misdemeanor count of hitting the woman, but that charge was dismissed on a prosecutor’s request Friday when a new two-count charge was filed on which he was arraigned, court records show. Fox remains free on a personal recognizance bond.
Cushing Police Officer Frank Edwards wrote in an affidavit that at 10:40 p.m. on Oct. 2, 2018, he and Officer Livergood were sent to the Cushing hospital on a disturbance call.
Fox’s girlfriend “told me that she was assaulted by her boyfriend Herbert Fox during an argument at their residence,” in the 300 block of N. Jones Avenue, the Cushing officer alleged in his affidavit.
The woman “told me that the argument was about her phone,” the Cushing officer wrote in his affidavit.
She said “she was watching a TV show on her phone under the covers because she was cold,” but when Fox asked what she was doing, he did not believe her and called her a name, the affidavit alleged.
She “told me that Fox tried to take her phone and they began to struggle over the phone,” the Cushing officer alleged in his affidavit. The woman “told me that Fox put her in a choke hold to get her phone,” and she tried to poke him in the eyes to get him to release her,” the Cushing officer alleged in his affidavit.
The woman said “she elbowed him in the face and then he began to punch her and slammed her head against the wall,” the affidavit alleged.
She said “he stopped when she said ‘babe, you really hurt me’ and saw the blood coming from her head,” the affidavit alleged.
“In her (written) statement, she said while Fox had ahold of her, she also bit him,” the affidavit alleged. She said “Fox tried to clean the blood off of her face,” the affidavit alleged.
The woman said “she called her mom from the bathroom to come pick her up and take her to the hospital,” the affidavit alleged.
“At the end of the contact with her, she said she wanted to press charges on Fox for assault,” the affidavit alleged.
The woman “had a laceration and swelling slightly above her right eyebrow,” as well as swelling below her right eye, the affidavit alleged. She also had red marks and swelling on her neck, the affidavit alleged.
“We left the hospital and attempted to make contact with Fox,” at his residence, the Cushing officer wrote in his affidavit.
“When we arrived I observed the lights on and knocked on the door. Fox was not home or did not want to answer. I tried to locate a phone number for Fox, but was unable to,” the Cushing officer wrote in his affidavit.
Although the Cushing officer sought a felony charge of domestic abuse by strangulation, only a misdemeanor count of domestic assault and battery was initially filed by the prosecution, court records show. Fox voluntarily appeared in court on May 21, 2019, on that misdemeanor after being sent a letter by the District Attorney’s Office notifying him of the charge.