The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

April 3, 2013

Woman pleads guilty to assault on boyfriend

A Joplin woman pleaded guilty Monday in Jasper County Circuit Court to felony assault in connection with an incident in 2011 when she ran her boyfriend down with a vehicle and broke his ankle.

Rebecca L. LaZier, 35, pleaded guilty to a reduced count of second-degree domestic assault in a plea deal with the prosecutor’s office that would limit the prison time she might be assessed to no more than four years. The prosecutor also has agreed not to oppose the possibility that the defendant might receive probation.

LaZier had been facing a charge of first-degree assault for allegedly striking Johnathan King with an Oldsmobile Cutlass on Oct. 2, 2011, after the couple argued at the Lowe’s home improvement store in Joplin. King reportedly left the store on foot, and LaZier pursued him in the car across the parking lot, over a curb and up a grassy incline, across a sidewalk and through another lot before pinning him against a building at 2820 S. Range Line Road.

Besides the broken ankle, King also suffered severe injury to skin and muscle tissue in the calf of his leg, according to an affidavit.

Circuit Judge David Dally delayed formal action on the plea deal and ordered the completion of a sentencing-assessment report. A sentencing hearing is set for June 3.

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