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Saturday, July 4 Police Reports

New Milford man charged with kidnapping, assaulting Brookfield woman

BROOKFIELD — A New Milford man is facing 14 felony and eight misdemeanor charges for allegedly assaulting, threatening and kidnapping a local woman.

Joseph R. Caruso, 30, was arrested June 6, after someone reported a domestic violence incident involving him and a 33-year-old Brookfield woman.

Officers contacted the woman and she eventually agreed to come in for an interview, according to a police affidavit.

The woman had “visible bruising to her arm,” lacerations to her hand and inside of her lip, as well as a “large bump on the back of her head,” according to police.

During the interview, she told police about an incident on June 3, during which she said Caruso strangled, sexually assaulted and slapped her “repeatedly in the face,” and attempted to rape her.

At one point, the altercation woke up a 9-year-old boy who had been sleeping in a nearby bedroom, according to the police affidavit.

The woman told police she struggled to get away from Caruso, but he barricaded her into a bedroom.

In the room, she said, he forced a pair of scissors into her hands and tried stabbing himself before putting the scissors to her neck and saying, “I’m going to kill you so you’re not with anyone else.”

The altercation eventually moved into the bathroom, where Caruso allegedly slammed the victim’s head into a shower wall, tried to shove her head into a toilet bowl, held her face under flowing sink water and then strangled her until she passed out, according to the police affidavit.

The woman told police it was not the first time Caruso had strangled or assaulted her, describing an incident at her apartment on April 11 that started with an argument between her and Caruso.

She said Caruso strangled her and she tried to run away but he chased her down, dragged her to his SUV and drove off at a high rate of speed, according to the affidavit.

After driving up Route 7 through New Milford, the woman said Caruso pulled into a large shopping center and threatened to “kill her and make her body disappear into the woods,” then continued driving and threatened to crash the vehicle to kill them both.

The victim said Caruso eventually drove to his house in New Milford and dragged her inside. She said he then pulled out a small handgun, put it to his head and pulled the trigger, but the gun did not fire, according to the affidavit.

She said he then began playing with the gun and pointing it at her chest.

“Jane Doe stated she was exhausted and decided to stop fighting. This was when (Caruso) stopped and Jane Doe was able to fall asleep,” the police affidavit states.

The victim told police Caruso drove her back to Brookfield the next morning.

She told police Caruso took her cellphone during both the April and June incidents so she couldn’t call for help, and that she had been scared to call 911 afterward because he had threatened to kill her if she did.

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Caruso is facing first-degree kidnapping, second-degree threatening, first-degree reckless endangerment and four counts of second-degree strangulation charges in the April 11 incident.

For the June 3 incident, he has been charged with attempt to commit first-degree sexual assault, first-degree unlawful restraint, risk of injury to child, first-degree criminal mischief, two counts of third-degree sexual assault, two counts of second-degree threatening, three counts of first-degree assault and four counts of third-degree assault.

Caruso is being held at the New Haven Correctional Center on $500,000 bond. A plea hearing is scheduled for Aug. 7 in state Superior Court in Danbury.

Kendra Baker|General Assignment Reporter

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