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PD: Man Strangled Girlfriend, Threatened to 'Cut Her Into Little Pieces'

Middletown Police say a 28-year-old city man refused to buy the victim cigarettes and alcohol because the money was needed for food.

Walberto Cruz Rivera
Walberto Cruz Rivera
A city man is in custody after choking his girlfriend during a heated argument then threatening to viciously injure her with a knife, according to Middletown Police.

On Dec. 2 at 6:44 p.m., police were called to assist an officer chasing Walberto Cruz Rivera, 28, of South Main Street on foot near Mezzo Bar and Grill, according to the report.

The document says once apprehended, Cruz Rivera denied running from police, saying was scared because one pulled a gun on him at headquarters.

He said he fought with his live-in girlfriend the night before because he refused to buy her cigarettes and alcohol, which they needed for food, and she scratched, punched and spit on him.

Cruz Rivera told officers he didn't want to get her in trouble because it would jeopardize them getting their child back from Department of Children and Families custody.

That night, Cruz Rivera said, he and the victim went to the Los Primos market on Main Street and after they fought he followed her to police headquarters, according to the report. There, police say, the woman told officers Cruz Rivera was physically abusive to her throughout their relationship.

The report says the victim told officers Cruz Rivera hit her and choked her by grabbing the front of her throat until she couldn't breathe. He then reportedly said he was going to "cut her head off and cut her into little pieces and nobody would ever find her," so she feared for her life.

Cruz Rivera was charged with interfering with an officer, disorderly conduct, third-degree assault, threatening and second-degree strangulation. He's being held on a $25,000 bond and due back in Middletown Superior Court on Dec. 10 at 10 a.m.

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