Man in police standoff case asks for release

NORWICH – A Bainbridge man charged with assaulting his wife after a three-hour standoff with New York State Police appeared in court Friday to beg the judge for his release. The alleged victim claims the incident was a misunderstanding.

Michael D. Richardson, 33, surrendered to police negotiators outside his residence Dec. 10 in the Village of Bainbridge and was later charged with felony second degree assault.

According to a grand jury indictment handed down in January, the alleged victim in the case, Richardson’s wife, suffered multiple strikes to her face, causing a fracture to the right eye socket and leaving her unconscious with a concussion.

New York State Police Captain James E. Barnes said troopers were alerted to the potential hostage situation at around 8:21 a.m. when a 911 call was placed by a relative of the family reporting a domestic dispute. By approximately 11:40 a.m., Richardson willingly surrendered to police outside his residence at 6 Johnson St. in the Village of Bainbridge.

A patrol arrived on the scene shortly after the original complaint and immediately established a security perimeter, blocking off several side streets and a portion of State Route 7.

Troopers evacuated residents from the homes directly surrounding the area, the railroad ceased operation through the village and the nearby Bainbridge-Guilford Greenlawn Elementary School was placed on lock out during the incident.

Richardson’s public defender Alan Gordon told Chenango County Court Judge W. Howard Sullivan Friday that his client could not afford the current $50,000 cash bail and that his wife was prepared to tell the court she accidentally fell down the stairs while under the influence of narcotics. He also said the family believed the incident was a miscommunication with law enforcement.

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