Man suspected of beating, stabbing woman for days
Although prosecutors might not file an official charge of torture against a southern Nevada County man, he will face a variety of abuse charges for allegedly beating and stabbing a woman over a five-day period last week.
Deputy District Attorney Kathryn Kull said Paul Leidel, 47, is scheduled to be arraigned this morning on three counts of assault with a deadly weapon and one each of sexual assault and criminal threat.
Kull said the official charge of torture is extremely hard to prove, and she does not know if she will charge Leidel with that in the future. But other charges could come as the investigation continues.
“She was pretty beat up,” Kull said of the 48-year-old victim. Kull said she has not interviewed the victim yet and “the investigation will go deeper.”
Nevada County Sheriff Keith Royal said the woman suffered a black eye, multiple fractures to her lower spine and 20 puncture wounds around her breasts, allegedly inflicted with a pocket knife.
The woman had so many bruises that Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital workers had to chart them to keep track, Royal said. She also had burns on her hands from landing on a heater while allegedly being thrown about, he said.
Leidel was arrested Friday after the woman was brought to the hospital by a friend. Royal said the friend noticed the wounds while visiting the victim. The friend made up an excuse to get the woman out of the home on the 22000 block of Cottage Hill Drive near Higgins Corner, the sheriff said.
One of Leidel’s charges of assault with a deadly weapon stems from the alleged use of a knife to inflict the breast wounds, Kull said. Another was for the defendant allegedly kicking the suspect in the back, causing the spinal injuries.
The third assault count came from Leidel allegedly punching the victim. Kull said the victim was punched so often in the face that she passed out.
The criminal threat charge came from the defendant allegedly terrorizing the victim with a machete.
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