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MPD: Muncie man strangled, battered woman with a child nearby

By Joe Schroeder,


MUNCIE, Ind. — A Delaware County man faces multiple felony charges after Muncie police allege he strangled and battered a woman while a young child was in the other room.

Mathew P. Leach, a 27-year-old Muncie man, was arrested by local police this week after officers took a report of a woman being battered by a known, intoxicated man. Leach, court documents show, now faces charges of felony strangulation and domestic battery with a child present.

The charge against Leach stems from an incident on Monday, Sept. 18, where officers Muncie Police Department officers were called around 11 p.m. to a local apartment in response to a battery.

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MPD said officers spoke with a woman who advised she’d asked Leach to bring her over food earlier in the night.

Once he arrived, the woman said she could tell Leach was intoxicated and asked him to leave. However, she said he refused to leave after multiple requests.

The woman then told MPD officers that Leach began to batter her, striking her on the right side of the face and the back of the head.

After hitting her, the woman said Leach put his hands on her neck/chest and held her down on the couch.

According to court documents filed against Leach in Delaware County Court, the woman told officers he climbed on top of her, put his knees into her thighs and forcefully choked her making it difficult to breathe. MPD officers noted the woman had a raspy voice when speaking to them.

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The woman said she was eventually able to push Leach off of her and run outside, but that the suspect followed her. Once they were both outside, the woman told officers she went back inside and locked Leach out of the apartment.
Mathew Leach mugshot

While speaking with officers, the victim also said that her 18-month-old child was asleep in a nearby room when the alleged attack occurred.

“She then voiced concern that [Leach] would return, cause more issues and possibly harm her,” MPD Ofc. Gary Moore wrote in a probable cause affidavit filed against Leach.

A domestic violence packet was subsequently filled out by the victim and officers, docs show. A probable cause affidavit was also completed by MPD officers for Leach’s arrest.

Delaware County court records show that Leach was arrested on Tuesday, Sept. 19, and booked into the county jail that afternoon on domestic battery and strangulation charges.

As of this article’s publication, online court records have not yet been updated to show if a pretrial hearing has been scheduled in Payne’s case .

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