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Ogema man charged with harassment, assault

James Lee Tow, 46, of 39950 County Road 34, Ogema has been charged in Becker County District Court with felony counts of harassment, domestic assault and fifth-degree assault and a gross misdemeanor count of interference with an emergency call.

According to court records: On May 9 he allegedly came home intoxicated and belligerent and assaulted his wife while she was sleeping, trying to strike her face, holding her wrists down on the bed and briefly choking her

She tried to call 911 but he allegedly prevented her from doing so. A young child in the residence tried to call 911 but Tow allegedly yelled at her and she dropped the phone and ran downstairs.

The sheriff's dispatch center received the 911 hang-up call, called back, and dispatched help when no one answered.

Officers found Tow hiding in the backyard, submersed in a lake up to his eyes and nose. He was allegedly "extremely argumentative and belligerent" when arrested and remained so during the ride to jail.

He appeared May 11 before District Judge Peter Irvine, who set bail or bond at $25,000 and ordered him to have no contact with the alleged victim and submit to drug and alcohol testing. His next court appearance is May 26.