Bail set at $50,000 in domestic violence case

A 47-year-old Whidbey Island man accused of beating and strangling a woman is being held in jail on $50,000 bail, according to court documents.

Prosecutors charged Robert L. Collins in Island County Superior Court April 16 with domestic violence assault in the second degree and violation of a domestic violence court order. Court documents describe him as an Oak Harbor, Bellingham and Freeland resident.

On April 10, an Oak Harbor police officer happened to be in downtown Oak Harbor and spoke with a woman who was crying and upset; she said she was worried her husband, Collins, would be mad at her because she had a drink and dinner with a female friend.

The officer realized that Collins had a court order barring him from contacting her, but the woman changed her story, according to a police report. Collins was charged with assaulting the woman with a knife and a court in Whatcom County ordered him not to contact her, the report states.

Another officer followed up in the morning at the woman’s apartment and saw a man that fit Collins’ description run inside. The police knocked on the door numerous times and Collins eventually came out, the report states. He was arrested.

Later that day, the woman’s friend reported that the woman had been badly injured.

The woman told police Collins had become upset when she came home the previous evening and attacked her; he threw her to the ground multiple times, repeatedly kicked her and strangled her at least four times, the police report states. She was transported to the hospital.

In an interview with police, Collins allegedly admitted kicking and strangling the woman, saying he did it because he wanted her to apologize for going out without telling him, the report states.

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