Release of suspect charged in domestic violence case renews calls for review of bail reform
A disturbing domestic violence arrest and subsequent release in Orange County has led to renewed calls for a second look at bail reform.
A Dutchess County mother says a two-hourlong domestic violence attack left her blind in her right eye.
"He had his arms and was right on top of me and looked right into my eyes and said this would be a perfect murder-suicide," she says.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office says 44-year-old John Pahucki, from Wawayanda, was charged with second-degree assault and harassment in the January attack.
Both felonies are eligible for bail, but prosecutors say Pahucki was released without it.
It's a frightening reality for the victim and Pahucki's ex-wife, Vanessa Petrossian, who says he has a history of domestic violence.
"How disturbed are you that he would be released without bail even though the offenses are bail eligible?," asks Petrossian. "To hear her recount the stories, it's torture. It wasn't just a slap in the face, it was hours of beatings that she and I both received."
Sen. Mike Martucci says this case and others like it are reason to repeal bail reform adding, "New York's dangerous bail elimination law continues to fuel a cycle of crime, and as evidenced here, has caused a disturbing rise in intimate partner violence. This failed catch-and-release policy is putting victims at immediate risk of more abuse. Sadly, there are countless cases just like this one."
In this case, both women have orders of protection in place, but Petrossian says the order of protection is just a piece of paper.
News 12 reached John Pahucki by phone and asked him about the allegations, but he declined to comment.