An Albion man allegedly beat a pregnant woman and choked her daughter following a day of drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana, stopping the assault only after children in the home fought back and locked him outside, police said.

Joseph W. Reynolds

Joseph W. Reynolds, 42, was arrested Wednesday after the woman reported the assault on Knights Road at 3:54 p.m., according to a police affidavit filed in court by Kennebec County Sheriff’s Deputy Elijah J. Curtis. The woman, who was 35 weeks pregnant, reported that Reynolds had attacked her, as well as her daughters.

The Morning Sentinel is not naming the woman because its policy is not to identify alleged victims of violent crimes without their consent.

When Curtis arrived at the home, he noticed a Christmas tree standing up with broken ornaments and lights in disarray on the floor.

The woman told Curtis that Reynolds “had been drinking and smoking marijuana all day” and became angry during an argument, “yelling at her and the kids” and “taking stuff outside and burning it.” Reynolds came back inside, pushed the tree over and assaulted people, the woman told Curtis.

The woman said she blacked out but remembered Reynolds hitting her multiple times in the stomach. Curtis noticed her face and neck were red, and noticed visible red marks on her daughter’s neck.

The woman said her 13-year-old daughter tried to stop the attack and Reynolds “grabbed her by the neck and started choking her.” The daughter corroborated the story, saying Reynolds had hit and choked her mother until she blacked out and told the sheriff’s deputy, “I knew it was either fight or flight and so I started hitting Joseph to protect my mom.”

“All of the children in the house jumped on Joseph (Reynolds) to protect” the daughter, Curtis wrote. That’s when the woman called police, “so Reynolds went back outside and they locked him out of the house.”

When Curtis questioned Reynolds, he admitted to drinking and said he had gotten into an argument with the woman over clothes, and took the clothes outside and started burning them. Reynolds claimed he knocked over the Christmas tree and then “the girls all started attacking him so he went back outside and waited for law enforcement to show up.” He denied hitting anyone and said they were lying.

Curtis arrested Reynolds on a charge of elevated aggravated assault on a pregnant person, a Class A offense, as well as a Class D charge of domestic violence assault. He was taken to the Kennebec County jail in Augusta, where he remained held without bail Friday.

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