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Probate judge granted program that could erase attack charge

Posted September 20

— A Connecticut probate judge charged with choking his wife was accepted into a diversionary program on Tuesday that could result in charges against him being dismissed.

Judge Martin Landgrebe appeared Tuesday in Waterbury Superior Court and was accepted into the state's family violence education program. If Landgrebe completes the program, charges of misdemeanor strangulation and disorderly conduct would be dismissed next year.

Landgrebe continues to preside at Housatonic Probate Court in New Milford. He and his lawyer declined to comment on Tuesday.

Assistant State's Attorney Karen Diebolt did not object to Landgrebe's entry into the program. A full protective order barring Landgrebe from having contact with the woman was downgraded during Tuesday's court hearing to a residential protective order, which means he can have contact with the woman but has to stay away from her home.

Court documents do not identify the alleged victim, but Landgrebe's lawyer, David Moraghan, previously told the Connecticut Law Tribune that the woman is Landgrebe's wife.

Landgrebe turned himself in to police on Aug. 9 after learning there was a warrant for his arrest following a fight with the woman, according to court documents. The woman told police that Landgrebe pinned her in the grass by holding her throat, but that at no time did she have difficulty breathing.

Landgrebe told police he was defending himself. His lawyer has said that Landgrebe actually was the one who was assaulted.

Landgrebe filed for divorce soon after the incident, but withdrew the filing on Sept. 7, according to court documents.

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