James City man convicted of choking girlfriend

WILLIAMSBURG — A James City man accused of choking a woman until she passed out maintained his innocence Thursday in Circuit Court while conceding there was enough evidence to find him guilty of strangulation.

Michael C. Davis, 32, entered an Alford plea, stipulating the evidence was sufficient to convict him while not admitting guilt, on the felony strangulation charge. Charges of assault and battery and violating a protective order were dropped.

Davis could face five years in prison and a $2,500 fine when he is sentenced in November.

On the morning of March 17, Davis' live-in girlfriend discovered about $400 missing from her bank account and confronted Davis, who became enraged, according to assistant commonwealth's attorney Joshua DeFord. He said David hit her, spit on her andbegan throwing things at her.

Police said David knocked the woman to the ground and covered her mouth and nose. DeFord said the woman squirmed in an effort to get a breath as Davis held her down, then Davis placed one shin across her throat and used his body weight to pin her down, causing her to lose consciousness.

When the woman woke she was being carried to Davis' truck, according to DeFord, who noted she was able to escape from the vehicle and go to a neighbor's home. Deford said Davis told police that his girlfriend started the altercation, and that he held her down in an attempt to call 911, but the call did not go through.

Defense attorney Paul Freeman argued that the fight started because the woman took medication belonging to Davis.

Robertson can be reached at 757-345-2342.