A 74-year-old woman fought off a 26-year-old man trying to strangle her in her Richland home Wednesday.
Jared W. Pruitt was later found in Benton City and taken to the Benton County jail for a 72-hours hold on suspicion of second-degree assault.
Pruitt came to the woman’s home in the 200 block of Adams Street at 12:39 p.m. and she let him inside because she knew him as a friend of her grandson, said Richland police Capt. Mike Cobb.
She made him food after he said he had “just been released from jail,” according to court records.
He didn’t eat it but he asked to stay with her. She declined and Pruitt reportedly left after 30 minutes.
He allegedly returned later and sat in a chair as the woman painted. When she got up to go to the bathroom, Pruitt reportedly attacked her, though it’s unclear why.
“He knocked her to the ground and began strangling her,” Cobb said. “She was able to fend him off, and he ran away from the house.”
The victim called 911 asking for an ambulance to come to her home. She said he hurt her neck and her arm.
Police claim Pruitt confirmed most of what the woman told them, except he said he was there on Tuesday when he turned down the food and asked to stay.
Pruitt has a long criminal history with felony convictions for third-degree assault, felony harassment, second-degree burglary, and earlier this year he pleaded guilty to felony charges of possessing methamphetamine and was sentenced to three months in jail, according to court records.
He also faced misdemeanor charges in 37 cases in Benton County District Court. Two were for assault and one for possessing drug paraphernalia.