At around 5:15 a.m. on Sunday, Missoula Police Officers were dispatched to a reported physical disturbance in the 2000 block of Sherwood lane. A man reported to 911 that his wife had bit him, broke all of his liquor bottles, and hit him with a wooden board. Police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh explains.

“The first officer on scene observed a male, who was subsequently identified as 36-year-old Jeffrey Harmon, in an ally where he had just thrown something in a dumpster,” Welsh said. “Harmon acknowledged that he was involved in the disturbance. He said his wife had assaulted him. He appeared to be very intoxicated and stated that he did not want to go forward with any investigation.”

Harmon told officers that he did not want his wife to get in trouble and that he no longer needed police assistance.

“Other officers made contact with his spouse, a 30-year-old female, at their residence,” Welsh said. “She, and a witness who was on scene, reported that Mr. Harmon had in fact strangled her after an argument escalated into a physical confrontation. Further investigation into the incident revealed that Mr. Harmon had thrown prescription narcotics into the dumpster at the time he observed the first officer on the scene.”

An officer located about 40 lorazepam pills, one hydrocodone pill, a small plastic bag of methamphetamine, and several syringes.

According to court document, the witness heard a lot of yelling in the living room and started walking up the stairs. She began recording a video on her phone and heard the victim saying “help,” and “Jeff let go of me I can’t breathe,” and “stop it” in a shaky and restrained voice.

When the witness opened the door, she saw Harmon’s arm around the victim’s neck with his elbow near the front of her throat. The video from the witness captured Harmon strangling the victim, and the victim saying “stop choking me.”

The victim disclosed that the incident started when she tried to go to bed, ultimately trying to sleep in their kids’ room with the kids. Harmon followed her to the kids’ room and kept yelling at her, which she told him was scaring the kids.

The victim said that she did not think the incident was “deadly” and believes that Harmon needs rehab for his drinking addiction.

Harmon was charged with felony strangulation, felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs, and partner or family member assault. Harmon's charging documents can be found here.

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