Man accused of assaulting mom appears in court

B.G. woman told police son had a ‘strange look’

By Jessica Prokop, Columbian Courts Reporter

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The mother of a Battle Ground man who allegedly tried to stab her in the chest Wednesday told police that her son had a “strange look” on his face and didn’t say a word during the attack, according to court documents.

Austin R. Puckett, 19, is also accused of putting his sister in a chokehold after she wrestled him off of their mother, court records state. He appeared Thursday in Clark County Superior Court on suspicion of first-degree domestic violence assault, second-degree domestic violence assault and third-degree assault on an officer.

His bail was set at $50,000. He will be arraigned Oct. 18.

Court records indicate that Puckett suffers from schizophrenia.

Puckett’s mother, Heather Puckett, told police that her son had gone for a walk at about 1:30 p.m. and returned home to Battle Ground Mobile Estates, 300 S.W. Seventh Ave., about an hour later. He walked into their residence with a “strange look” on his face and his hands behind his back, and stood behind his mother, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case.

He then wrapped his arms around his mother, holding a large knife in one hand and brought it down toward her chest. Puckett sliced his mother’s chest near her right collar bone, the affidavit states.

Heather Puckett grabbed the blade with her hands and tried to wrestle it away from her son, sustaining lacerations to her hands. Her daughter ran over and tried to help, court documents said. Austin Puckett eventually dropped the knife and his mother pushed it away from them as they continued to wrestle.

He then put his sister in a chokehold. And when she broke free, she asked her brother what he was doing. He replied, “What do you mean?” court records state.

Both she and her mother ran from the house and called 911.

Initial information relayed to police indicated that Puckett first fled on foot to Kiwanis Park, but responding officers later found he had returned to his home, according to the Battle Ground Police Department.

Police said Puckett left the home while officers were starting to secure a perimeter around it. He was compliant at first, then suddenly charged at officers. He grabbed one officer’s duty belt, pulling a magazine holder and two magazines loose. Officers had to pry one of the magazines out of Puckett’s hand. As he continued to resist arrest, they used a stun gun, the affidavit states.

Puckett had a knife when he was arrested, police said, and officers found another knife, thought to have been used in the initial assault, nearby.

Reporter Andy Matarrese contributed to this report.