By Dave Rogers
---- — SALISBURY — A Holyoke man remains behind bars following his arrest Christmas Eve for allegedly dousing his girlfriend with gasoline during an argument outside the Mobil on the Run station on Route 110.
Tariq Javed, 22, a Pakistani native, was charged with domestic assault and battery and intimidating a witness.
He was arraigned in Newburyport District Court by Judge Peter Doyle yesterday and is expected back in the courtroom next Wednesday for a dangerousness hearing. If convicted of the most serious charge, assault and battery, Javed could be sentenced to 2 1/2 years in jail plus a $1,000 fine. A dangerousness hearing is conducted to determine whether a suspect may be eligible for bail or is considered too much of a danger to the public or the victim of a crime to be released.
According to the report of Salisbury police officer Michael Tullercash, the incident began around 4:30 p.m. Monday when the victim drove away from her residence after an argument with her boyfriend. Javed chased after her, but was unable to locate her car until spotting her in Newington, N.H. Noticing she was being followed by her boyfriend, the victim continued driving for more than two hours before stopping at the Route 110 gas station to refill her tank. During that time, the suspect called the victim at least 20 times on her cellphone.
When she stopped next to one of the pumps, the suspect pulled in front of her, blocking her exit. He then left his car, took the nozzle out of her gas tank and sprayed her with the flammable liquid. When she tried to call police, the suspect grabbed the phone out of her hand. The victim then ran into the gas station and asked the clerk to call police, according to Tullercash’s report.
By the time Tullercash and officer Timothy Hunter responded, the suspect had run to the men’s room. When police began questioning the suspect, they noticed a strong odor of gasoline on him. The 32-year-old victim also smelled of gasoline. The suspect denied pouring gasoline on her, saying he had accidentally spilled gasoline on his foot.
After talking to the victim, police handcuffed Javed and drove him to the station for booking, according to Tullercash.