DILLON, COLORADO – David Kirsch, 47, of Oredaca, California, was advised yesterday in Summit County Court on felony charges, including Assault in the Second Degree by Strangulation (F4) one of the first defendants arrested on this charge, which became effective on July 1, 2016, pursuant to House Bill 16-1080, and was enacted to address the serious risks attendant to choking. (See http://tornado.state.co.us/gov_dir/leg_dir/olls/sl2016a/sl_327.pdf) Defendant Kirsch is alleged to have committed the act as Domestic Violence.
According to the arrest warrant, Dillon Police responded to City Market in Dillon on Saturday night, August 27, where the met the victim in the store, who there was able to escape her attacker and alert police of the alleged crime. The victim was observed with a swollen, bloody lip after being struck by the defendant’s hand at a nearby apartment where they were staying, and then grabbed by the neck, impeding her airway and making it difficult to breath.
District Attorney Bruce Brown commented on the arrest stating, “Before the new legislation this case would most likely been prosecuted as a misdemeanor. However with the new law, bringing Colorado in step with many other progressive states who are toughening up laws that protect against domestic violence, we now have more teeth to prosecute. A bigger bite means hopefully fewer crimes as offenders get the message and those that don’t are incarcerated for longer periods, protecting the public,” said District Attorney Bruce Brown.“
Non-fatal strangulation, as opposed to other severe forms of physical violence such as striking with fists or another object, frequently leaves little in the way of observable injury, yet can result in serious physical and mental health consequences. Strangulation is an important form of physical violence against women who are in abusive relationships and is correlated to an increased risk of attempted and completed homicide, according to a 2007 study published in Journal of Emergency Medicine. (See http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2573025/.)
Defendant Kirsch’s next court hearing is scheduled on September 7, 2016 at 1:30pm.
On Monday, Defendant Kirsch was in custody at the Summit County Sheriff’s Office. At yesterday’s hearing, a mandatory protection order for the victim was also granted by the Judge Edward Casias.
Note: All persons charged with crimes are presumed innocent until the contrary is proven in a court of law.
[A booking photo of defendant accompanies this release]