AUGUSTA — Instead of picking a jury Thursday for his trial on domestic violence charges, a city man pleaded guilty to reckless violation of protective order and violating conditions of release — after the prosecutor informed the court he had called the victim 62 times over the past two months.

Aaron Francis Brunelle, 39, had been scheduled to consult with his lawyer, Kevin Sullivan, about picking a jury at the Capital Judicial Center in a case in which he had been indicted on charges of aggravated assault, domestic violence assault, violation of a protective order and domestic violence terrorizing, stemming from a June 2, 2017, incident in Augusta.

Augusta police Officer David Adams, in a affidavit filed at the court, said he responded to a call for help from a woman at a Northern Avenue address who said Brunelle arrived at her home to pick up items but ended up choking her and threatening to kill her.

Adams said the woman reported that Brunelle had stomped on her neck. She managed to free herself and ran outside, she said, with him following her. She then locked Brunelle out and he ripped out the window air conditioner to attempt to get in, Adams wrote.

Brunelle was arrested that day, and a judge set bail conditions for him that prohibited him from contact with the woman even if he was still in jail.

The prosecutor, in a motion to the court dated Thursday, requested a delay in the case while the state investigated information about the calls from the jail.

“It has come to the attention as of 3:30 p.m. (Dec. 5) that the defendant has made 62 calls from the defendant to the victim between September and last week discussing the case, discussing the attorneys, discussing testifying, discussing the fact that these phone calls could be charged as felony (violating conditions of release) and other information,” Assistant District Attorney Frayla Tarpinian wrote.

Brunelle then opted to plead guilty to the reckless violation of a protective order from the June 2, 2017, incident and to two charges of violating conditions of release carrying dates of Oct.1-31, 2018, and Nov. 1-30, 2018.

He was sentenced to 30 months in prison.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams

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