Suspended Waltham police chief to be freed from jail but must enter mental health facility
CONCORD — Waltham Police Chief Thomas M. LaCroix allegedly grabbed his wife in a chokehold and slammed her into a counter in the kitchen of their Maynard home during an explosion of violence last week, it was disclosed in court today.
LaCroix was arrested by Maynard police last week, but details of the alleged acts of domestic violence that took place on June 12 had not been revealed by authorities. During the second day of a two-day dangerousness hearing held in Concord District Court today, some of the allegations against LaCroix were made public.
According to Middlesex Assistant District Attorney Suzanne Kontz, the chief’s wife, Andrea K. LaCroix, showed up at a neighbor’s home crying, hysterical, and without her cellphone or her keys.
She also had a swollen lip and walked with a limp, officials allege.
Accompanied by the neighbor, Andrea LaCroix returned to the couple’s home where the chief allegedly grabbed her in a chokehold and slammed her into a kitchen counter.
LaCroix also allegedly said that if he had a gun he would shoot and kill his wife and then kill himself, according to the testimony.
When he was arrested by Maynard police, LaCroix repeatedly banged his head against the side of the police cruiser.
After the incident, Andrea LaCroix received treatment at Newton Wellesley Hospital.
Today, District Court Judge Paul Yee ordered that LaCroix be released from jail within the next 24 hours, and that he must report to a mental health facility. The judge also ordered LaCroix to wear a GPS monitoring bracelet and stay away from his wife and the neighbor who came to her aid.
LaCroix is charged with two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, two counts of assault and battery, one count of assault and one count of intimidating a witness, officials have said. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Today, defense attorney Peter Bella repeatedly urged the judge to release LaCroix, who has been in custody since his arrest, from jail. “He is not a danger to himself,’’ Bella said. “He is not a danger to others.’’
Waltham Mayor Jeannette McCarthy, who appointed LaCroix chief in 2008, has placed him on paid administrative leave. The city has seized his firearm and his badge, Waltham officials have said.Adam Sege can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.