PHIPPSBURG — A 59-year-old Phippsburg woman was treated at a Brunswick hospital Thursday afternoon after she was hit in the head twice with a frying pan by a man to whom she rents a room in her home, police said.

Phippsburg police responded to the home on Parker Head Road, near Popham Road, shortly before 2 p.m.

According to Phippsburg Police Chief John Skroski, 54-year-old James Nields, who rents a room in the home, hit the woman in the head twice with a cast-iron frying pan and then dragged her by her hair into the kitchen. He then is reported to have made a comment about wanting to harm himself and he left the residence.

Topsham police Officer Lucas Shirland and a police dog tried to track Nields, but were unable to locate him. Two Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Office detectives helped canvass the area and a member of the Maine Warden Service searched the shore by boat.

Phippsburg Ambulance took the victim to Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick, where she was treated and released.

Phippsburg police Officer Zech Thomas remained at the house while Skroski went to the hospital with the victim.

Just before 7:30 p.m. Thomas spotted Nields emerging from woods near the house and detained him. Nields was arrested and charged with aggravated assault, a Class B felony.

“He admitted to striking the woman over the head with a frying pan and dragging her by the hair,” Skroski said. “He did also admit that he’d been drinking.”

The incident apparently stemmed from some sort of disagreement over a dog in the house, Skroski said.

Nields had an outstanding traffic warrant out of West Bath District Court for failure to appear for a registration violation, so bail was not allowed.

He is scheduled to appear in West Bath District Court on Sept. 18.

According to Skroski, the Phippsburg police have no history with Nields, who is from western Massachusetts and has lived in the Popham area for four years.

After his arrest, Nields was taken to Mid Coast Hospital for an evaluation before police took him to Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset.

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