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Cops: Utah man tried to kill wife, 2 kids after abusing them

Photo by Larry W. Smith/Getty Images

PROVO, Utah (AP) — A Provo man has been charged with child abuse and attempted murder after police say he choked his wife and children and repeatedly abused them.

Jaime Marcos Salinas, 32, was charged Wednesday with multiple counts of child abuse, aggravated assault, and domestic violence, according to court documents.

On June 30, police said they received a call from Salinas’s wife, who said that he had repeatedly hit and choked their sons, an infant, and a three-year-old boy.
She told police the abuse made her feel like a “prisoner in her own home,” the court documents said.

In one incident, Salinas’s wife told investigators her husband dragged his family to a “hidden room” under the stairs of their house and choked his three-year-old son to the point of unconsciousness to stop him from crying. He then shoved his fingers and a sock in his infant son’s mouth and squeezed his wife’s neck with both of his hands until she could not breathe.

Court documents detail harrowing, repeated instances of abuse where Salinas was violent toward his wife and children.

One day at home, Salinas got frustrated trying to find a remote control and started yelling at the three-year-old boy. He then to hit the boy on the leg with a belt, authorities said in the documents.

On a different night, while Salina’s wife was driving him to a local bar, he realized he forgot his cellphone. Salinas became enraged and hit his wife’s arm and throat, pulled her hair and shook her, the documents said. The woman suffered a large bruise on her arm.

Police found cameras throughout their home, which Salinas’s wife said he used to monitor and control his family’s actions from his cellphone. Salinas deleted the recordings when he learned that the Division of Child and Family Services would be investigating him for child abuse, the documents said.

Prosecutors said the woman initially declined to press charges but reported Salinas again weeks later while he was visiting family in Texas. Provo police Sgt. Nisha King says Salinas was arrested after a July 20 traffic stop revealed he was also using a faulty driver’s license.

There was also a warrant for his arrest issued from Texas for the alleged assault of a family member.

Salinas is being held in Utah County Jail without bail. No attorney has been listed in court documents who could comment on his behalf.