A probationary officer working in the Chattanooga Police Department's Neighborhood Policing Bureau has been relieved of duty and is the subject of an internal investigation after being charged with domestic assault.
Lorenzo Caldwell was relieved of duty on Sunday after police were called to his home in the 1900 block of Gunbarrel Road in response to a domestic dispute, according to a statement issued Sunday from the department.
Once police arrived, they spoke to Caldwell, who had made the call, and then the woman with whom he had been engaged in an altercation, according to Hamilton County court records.
The woman told police that Caldwell woke up at 4 a.m. to get ready for work and turned up the volume on the television, disrupting her sleep.
She said she "became aggravated" and unplugged the speakers to the television, court records state. Caldwell then plugged them back in, and the two went back-and-forth, plugging and unplugging, several times until Caldwell walked around and laid on top of the woman to keep her from unplugging the speakers again, she told police.
He got off of her a few minutes afterward and after she asked him to move, court records show.
But then she got up and unplugged the television. That's when Caldwell "football tackled her," she told police. They both fell to the floor, where he held her down.
She told police she picked up a piece of weight lifting equipment and swung it at him in an attempt to make him stop, but that didn't work. So she tried a shoe.
When Caldwell got up, she went to the kitchen to grab some water, court records show. While in the kitchen, Caldwell walked past her toward the laundry room and bumped her on the way to and from the room.
So she "grabbed a knife and fork from the dish rack and through [sic] it at him," court records state. She said Caldwell then "slapped her on the back of the head." That's when she went out to her car to "cool down" while Caldwell remained on the porch.
Police confirmed with Caldwell that the argument was over the television, but he denied ever laying on top of the woman. Instead of tackling her, he said, she lunged at him while they were both trying to grab the plug to the television. That's how they ended up on the floor, he said.
He told police they were both on the floor for a short time and the woman swung a dumbbell at him, though he didn't feel threatened by the swing. He also confirmed she threw the knife and fork at him, but neither of them made contact with him.
Police noted the woman had a small abrasion to her elbow, which is consistent with falling onto carpeted flooring. They also noted Caldwell had a small abrasion on one of his knuckles, which also would be consistent with falling onto a carpet.
Because investigators determined he was "the primary aggressor in [the] domestic assault incident," Caldwell was taken into custody and charged with domestic assault.
His bond was set at $2,000. He will remain on administrative leave with the Chattanooga Police Department until the investigation has been completed, officials said in the statement.
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