Border patrol officer accused of felony assault after accident that killed his wife in Massena
MASSENA -- A Lyon Mountain man is facing two felonies for allegedly punching an elderly couple who stopped to assist the man's wife, who had been hit by a vehicle on county Rte. 37 on Dec. 4 and subsequently died, according to state police.
Bryan C. McDonald, 34, allegedly punched a 66-year-old man and a 65-year-old woman causing facial injuries, including contusions and bruising. They were treated at Massena Memorial Hospital and released, police said.McDonald is charged with two counts of second-degree assault, felony. The charges are felonies because of the age of the victims. State law upgrades and assault charge to a felony when the victim is more than 65 years old and the perpetrator is more than 10 years their junior.
According to statements given to police, McDonald, an off-duty Border Patrol agent, struck Richard F. Ladue, 66 and Carol Ladue, 65, both of Massena.
Carol Ladue gave a statement to police saying she and her husband were returning home from the Massena Community Center in separate cars on county Route 37 Dec. 4 around 10:30 p.m. She said she was flagged down upon arriving at the scene and as she approached after leaving her car, McDonald started yelling at her and punched her in the face, according to her statement. Inv. Nick Arcadi filed a document with the court saying McDonald also kicked Ladue while she was down.
Richard Ladue arrived shortly after his wife, he told police. He got out of his vehicle and McDonald started yelling at him and struck him in the face, he told police. He said in his statement that he believed McDonald broke his nose.
Both Ladues sought treatment at Massena Memorial Hospital, court documents say.
The accident claimed the life of 33-year-old Ashley B. McDonald.
McDonald, 33, was struck and killed around 10:30 p.m. by a vehicle being driven by Megan M. Phelix, 32, of Massena.
McDonald was arraigned Massena court before Town Justice Gerald Sharlow and released under the supervision of probation.
He is to appear in Brasher Town Court Jan. 12.
The court issued orders of protection for the two victims.
The incident remains under investigation by the State Police and the St. Lawrence County District Attorney's Office.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection did not return attempts to contact them for comment on this story.