Woman denies hitting boyfriend with car
By ERIC FRANCIS
CORRESPONDENT | April 12,2013
WHITE RIVER JUNCTION — A Springfield woman with a history of domestic violence convictions denied striking her boyfriend with her car after an argument early Thursday morning.
A distraught and crying Cheryl Soundy, 34, was ordered held for lack of $5,000 bail Thursday afternoon after a public defender entered innocent pleas on her behalf.
She was charged with a felony count of first-degree aggravated domestic assault and a misdemeanor charge of grossly negligent operation of a vehicle.
Springfield Police had initially classified the case as an attempted murder during the pre-dawn hours. But prosecutors did not bring that charge because of doubts as to how fast Soundy was driving when she allegedly veered off Perley Gordon Road and struck the victim.
Richard Cole of Bellows Falls, who turned 54 Wednesday, was hospitalized Thursday for treatment of neck, back and hand injuries.
Springfield Police Cpl. Chris Norton said he was patroling near the town sewer plant on Clinton Street at 3 a.m. when he noticed Cole waving his arms to get his attention.
Norton said he returned to where the bleeding Cole was bent over a guardrail. Cole told him he’d walked from Perley Gordon Road trying to flag down some help after Soundy had deliberately run him over, Norton wrote in his affidavit.
The officer said Cole told him he got sick of arguing with Soundy, got out of her car, and was walking away.
“Richard stated that, ‘She hollered at me (and) said, I’m going to hit you with my car!’” Norton said.
Moments later, “the next thing he knew he got hit by the car and thrown into the air,” the corporal wrote. “He landed down the embankment on the north side of the road and was able to wrap his arms around a tree to avoid falling into the river.”
After an ambulance took Cole to Springfield Hospital, officers found tire tracks in the grass nearly 6 feet off the road, within an inch of the edge of a steep embankment, Norton wrote.
A short time later Norton stopped Soundy as she was driving on Perley Gordon road. The corporal said Soundy denied threatening to hit Cole and also denied that she struck him, though she said she “swerved” at him.
“I jerked the wheel, then quickly turned away and sped off,” Norton quoted her as saying.
Officers said there appeared to be a “fresh scuff mark on the passenger side of (Soundy’s car) hood.”
Deputy State’s Attorney David Cahill argued for bail, noting Soundy’s previous felony convictions for aggravated domestic assault and the 15-year maximum penalty on the new felony charge.
“Given her history, she could actually be looking at something close to that,” the prosecutor said.