LAWTON, Okla. - A Lawton attorney, who is running for state office, is accused of beating up his fiancée. Former Municipal Judge Michael Corrales was arraigned Tuesday morning in Comanche County District Court, charged with misdemeanor assault and battery.
Lawton Police have spent the last week investigating accusations that Corrales, 50, battered his 22-year-old fiancée, Kimberly Leonard, last week. She ended up in the hospital with injuries to her head and body.
Leonard filed the initial report with Lawton Police the day after she was injured, but then she apparently changed her mind because she would not file the charges herself. She did not have to as it turns out. Legally, the district attorney could file the charges if he believed there is a pattern of abuse.
Lawton Police Chief Ronnie Smith says when Leonard showed up at a local hospital last week, she was pretty banged up.
"She had a knot on her head that was about the size of my fist," said Smith.
Leonard told police her fiancé, Michael Corrales, did it. She said they were driving to their home when he became angry with her, grabbed her by the hair, and slammed her head into the car's dashboard several times. She was also scratched and bruised, and had a swollen lip. Then she told police it was not the first time it had happened.
"They get the feeling that things are going to get better, they're under that impression that it's going to get better, this won't happen again, until it happens again," said Smith.
Leonard told police the abuse happened several times. In fact, she said there were pending assault charges in Texas she had filed in August. She and two witnesses claimed Corrales hit her and pushed her to the ground in a club.
The Grapevine Police faxed 7News the information. It said a hearing was scheduled for November. But then last week, just days after she reported this most recent alleged abuse, Texas Police say Leonard showed up, with Corrales, and dropped the charges. Leonard did the same thing in Lawton. Smith says that is not uncommon.
"They don't have anywhere else to go, or they really love the person that's doing this to them."
But even without her consent in this most recent case, the Comanche County DA decided to press charges against Corrales because of what appears to be a pattern of abuse.
"It's to protect the victim, because a lot of victims don't want to file because they are really afraid to file, or they think it won't happen again, so I'll let it go."
Another interesting part to the story, when the 7News crew was leaving the police department, on the windshield of the 7News car was a notarized statement signed by Kimberly Leonard. In it, she says the day she told police Corrales beat her she forgot to take her medication and was under the influence of alcohol. She says she got her injuries after she jumped out of his moving car.
7News contacted District Attorney Fred Smith for comment. He said he was busy preparing for another case and was not able to comment.