A Tacoma man accused of beating and seriously injuring his teenage stepdaughter with a chainsaw bar was in jail Tuesday.
Joshua David Charlton, 29, pleaded not guilty Monday to second-degree assault. Court Commissioner Meagan Foley ordered him held in lieu of $100,000 bail.
Public defender Jane Pierson declined to comment on his behalf Tuesday.
Charging papers give this account:
A 12-year-old boy called 911 Thursday to say his stepfather, Charlton, was assaulting his 14-year-old sister .
An officer arrived to find the girl convulsing and non-responsive on the front porch of the home on South Yakima Avenue. Her face was swollen and bloodied. Charlton wasn’t there when police arrived.
Later at the hospital, the girl told officers her stepfather had gotten angry and started throwing things at her, including a light bulb and perfume bottles.
Charlton punched her, threw her around and assaulted her with a chainsaw bar, at one point, kicking down a door when she tried to hide, the girl said.
Police said it appeared the bar – the metal piece around which the cutting chain spins – was detached from the machine.
The girl told officers Charlton had knocked her unconscious before, and that he has beaten her at least 20 times in the past few years.
Doctors said the girl had a nasal fracture requiring surgery, and serious head trauma, among other injuries.
The girl’s mother denied seeing what happened, and said there had been no previous issues between Charlton and the girl. She did say the girl had been assaulted with the bar of the chainsaw.
Her 12-year-old son told police he heard yelling and screaming from the basement when he was upstairs with his mother, then saw his sister run upstairs, bleeding. Charlton followed, pushed her toward a wall and hit his head against her, the boy said.
His mother yelled at him to call 911 and take the younger children upstairs, he said. Court records didn’t say how many kids were in the home.
When police found and arrested Charlton, he had cuts on his hands and officers said he smelled like alcohol.
Police spokesman Naveed Benjamin said the children were taken into protective custody.