YORK, Pa. (AP) – A central Pennsylvania county’s “Police Officer of the Year” has been charged with assaulting his wife.
The York Dispatch reports 34-year-old Bryn Lindenmuth was charged with simple assault, false imprisonment and harassment for allegedly ripping off some of his wife’s clothes, scratching her and refusing to let her leave her home after she returned from a cookout Saturday night. West Manchester Township police say she was able to run to a neighbor’s and call 911.
Lindenmuth has been placed on paid leave by the Southwestern Regional Police, who patrol several of York’s suburbs. His defense attorney didn’t immediately return a call for comment Wednesday.
Lindenmuth was named York County’s officer of the year in 2015 for making 16 DUI arrests, filing 45 criminal charges and conducting 350 traffic stops.
After Bryn Lindenmuth was arrested, Kalina Lindenmuth said she was “sick and tired” of being physically abused and pushed around by her husband, saying this type of violence had happened many times before, documents state.
She said she was afraid to call authorities because her husband is a police officer, according to charging documents.
The incident: Kalina Lindenmuth returned home from a cookout about 10:45 p.m. Saturday, and was parked near her home. Bryn Lindenmuth drove by in his Jeep, got out, unlocked his wife’s car with spare keys and took her keys out of her car, according to documents.
Bryn Lindenmuth then yelled at Kalina Lindenmuth before heading off in his Jeep, documents state. Kalina Lindenmuth walked back to her home, where police say she found her husband throwing beer bottles on the front lawn.
When she went into the house, her husband continued to yell at her, taking her phone and looking through it, police said. Bryn Lindenmuth then allegedly ripped her tank top, ripped off her bra, scratched her and allegedly tore apart her sandals, documents state. He also allegedly ripped up photos of them together, police said.
Kalina Lindenmuth then sat on a recliner while Bryn Lindenmuth used her phone to call her sister, telling the sister to mind her own business and calling both women “pieces of sh—t,” according to police.
Police say Bryn Lindenmuth pushed over the recliner with his wife still in it and that when she tried to walk away, he blocked her and pushed her, then tried to throw her through the rear sliding-glass door.
Bryn Lindenmuth allegedly hoisted Kalina Lindenmuth over his shoulder, but she managed to get away and ran to get her phone. Bryn Lindenmuth got the phone first and put it in his pocket, police said, then picked her up again, trying to force her outside.
“Bryn used substantial force using his elbow and jammed it down hard on her shoulder in an attempt to knock her down,” documents state.
He then tried to lock Kalina Lindenmuth in the garage, telling her she could sleep there before turning off the lights, documents state. After that, Bryn Lindenmuth allegedly came into the garage, telling his wife they were leaving, and he tried to force her into the passenger seat of a vehicle.
Kalina Lindenmuth tried to get back into the home to get her phone and wallet, but “Bryn kept blocking her path and grabbed her arms and started to force her backward to possibly fall down the steps,” documents state.
Kalina Lindenmuth was able to grab her flip-flops and run to a neighbor’s home, where she used their phone to call 911, police said. The entirety of the incident lasted from about 11 p.m. until 3 a.m., according to police.
While speaking with police, Kalina Lindenmuth said she was scared of what her husband might do after she called police, adding that he has many weapons in the house, documents state. The couple’s two children were not present during the incident, police said.
The responding officer conferred with the York County District Attorney’s Office before filing the charges, police said, and Kalina Lindenmuth was taken to a local district judge’s office to obtain an emergency protection-from-abuse order.
Investigation: Southwestern Regional Police Chief Greg Bean confirmed Tuesday that Bryn Lindenmuth was placed on paid leave immediately after the alleged incident. Bean said Lindenmuth will remain on paid leave until an internal investigation is complete.
An investigator within the department will be assigned to speak with those involved to determine if there has been any violation of orders. That will then be presented to the police board, which will make a decision about any disciplinary action, he said.
“We don’t want any stone unturned, as far as the facts of the situation, and we present the information as we know it, and a determination is made at that point,” Bean said.
The department will be working closely with the York County District Attorney’s Office and West Manchester Township Police during the investigation, he said.
Accolades: Bryn Lindenmuth was named 2015 York County Officer of the Year in May by the York County Police Heritage Museum.
He has been with the department for 11 years, according to a news release announcing the award. During that time he has received 21 awards or commendations. In 2015, he made 16 DUI arrests, filed 45 criminal charges and conducted 350 traffic enforcement stops, the release states.
“From the perspective of a police officer, he’s always excelled at whatever he does,” Bean said.
Bryn Lindenmuth also is a drug recognition expert and a member of the York County Drug Task Force as a liaison for the department, according to the release.
Lindenmuth could not be reached for comment Wednesday and remains free on $25,000 unsecured bail, meaning he didn’t have to post any money but could lose that amount if he fails to attend court proceedings.
Defense attorney Chris Ferro did not return a message seeking comment on Wednesday afternoon.
HT to GT for reporting on the story