WESTWOOD, Mass. (AP) — A white Massachusetts police officer who authorities say assaulted her husband and threatened her son's Black friend in a heated dispute over the Black Lives Matter movement is now facing criminal charges.
The Boston Globe reported a district court clerk magistrate ruled Thursday there's probable cause for criminal charges against Patricia Lio, 52, of Westwood.
The Milton police officer, who has been on paid administrative leave since October, is expected to be arraigned on a charge of assault to intimidate and a charge of assault and battery.
The off-duty incident happened last September while Lio's 15-year-old son watched a basketball game with a Black and a Hispanic friend during a sleepover.
Police say Lio aggressively confronted the Black teen about his support of the Black Lives Matter movement, using expletives, clenching her fists and standing close to his face.
Officers say Lio punched her husband in the face as he tried to intervene. The husband, however, testified in court this week that his wife didn't strike him and that the blood on his nose was from a work-related injury, the Globe reported.
Lio testified that she fears for her life because of anti-police sentiment and opposes efforts to "defund" police departments. Her lawyer argued she shouldn't face criminal charges.