Assault charge follows gathering with alcohol and chainsaws

FERRISBURGH — A Ferrisburgh man on Monday pleaded innocent in Addison Superior Court, criminal division, to a misdemeanor count of domestic assault, a charge stemming from an alleged Nov. 16 family fight near a home off Route 7 in Ferrisburgh.
The alleged victim reported the incident to Vermont State Police in the New Haven that day. She told authorities she was assaulted as a Nov. 15 party ended at which many of the participants had been drinking beer and liquor, according to court records.
At around 2:15 a.m., some of the partygoers decided to drive their trucks out into the fields near the house, according to an affidavit filed by Vermont State Police Trooper Cari Crick.
One of those who drove into the fields was Levi Dykema, 25, according to court records. But one or more of the trucks eventually got stuck in some debris, prompting the drivers to use chainsaws in an attempt to free the vehicles, according to court records.
The victim said she drove to the scene in a car to provide more light for those working on the trucks, according to Crick’s court affidavit. But that vehicle also got stuck, a fact that according to court records apparently angered Dykema.
The victim told police that Dykema opened the car door and grabbed her, “putting his right hand around her neck,” according to Crick’s affidavit, and then allegedly pulling her out of the car and throwing her against the driver’s side.
Police said the victim acknowledged punching Dykema in an effort to protect herself, but that he allegedly threw her to the ground when she tried to walk away, according to court records. Dykema allegedly accused the woman of infidelity and called her names, according to Crick’s affidavit.
Other people at the party then intervened and the victim was assisted into the home, according to court records. She alleged that Dykema pushed her up against a wall when she tried to leave and attempted to take the keys from her hand as she got into her vehicle, according to Crick.
VSP interviewed several witnesses to get their account of the alleged incident. They also spoke with Dykema, who alleged that the complainant was the aggressor and that she had accused him of infidelity, according to court records. He also alleged that he had pulled the woman out of the vehicle out of concern that she was driving while intoxicated, according to Crick’s report.
Witnesses confirmed that three young children were sleeping in the home during the incident, according to court records.

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