Man arrested after choking woman, damaging her vehicle

EAST OOLITIC– A Bedford man was arrested after a woman on Monday called the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department to report 49-year-old Richard Johnson had vandalized her 2006 Chevrolet HHR. 

Richard Johnson

The woman told police Johnson had gone to her ex-boyfriend’s house and started a physical altercation with him. The woman told police she asked Johnson to leave the residence. 

Later that night, she went out on the porch and found someone standing at the fence. Johnson had returned to the residence. The woman made Johnson get in her vehicle and took him home to his residence on Farmers Street in East Oolitic.

When they arrived, the two got into a verbal argument. They then went inside his camper and Johnson calmed down. 

Johnson then fell asleep and the woman was going to leave. But Johnson got up and went towards the woman. 

He grabbed the woman and took her to the ground and struck her multiple times in the face, and head. He then began choking her.

The woman was able to get away and attempted to flee to her vehicle. 

But Johnson had grabbed a claw hammer off the kitchen table and began hitting her windshield with the hammer. He then slashed two of her tires.

She took off in the vehicle and went to Hometown IGA in Bedford and waited for her mother to come pick her up.

Police say she had visible marks around her neck.

The woman signed a battery affidavit. Johnson was arrested on charges of domestic battery, criminal confinement, strangulation, criminal mischief.

If you or someone you know is involved in a domestic violence situation and needs help, call Hoosier Hills PACT 24-hour crisis line at 1-888-883-1959 or visit their website at

The agency can provide emergency assistance with shelter to those in domestic violence situations.  Hoosier Hills Pack also provides assistance with court advocacy, protective orders, education, outreach programs, support groups, and more.