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Chester County Press

DA's Office issues details of Nottingham attacks

02/18/2016 09:23AM ● Published by J. Chambless

William Anthony Brown

The Chester County District Attorney’s Office formally filed charges against a West Nottingham man in the alleged stabbing of one woman and the sexual assault of another, in what authorities termed a domestic abuse incident.

In a press release issued on Feb. 17, the District Attorney's Office wrote that William Brown, 45, is facing charges of attempted murder and rape and related charges following a Valentine’s Day incident at the Nottingham home of his estranged wife — who had a temporary protection from abuse order against Brown.

State Police burst in on the home, mid-attack, authorities said, because the stabbing victim, the wife’s cousin, dialed 911 on her cell phone and left the phone call open, as the attack continued, prompting immediate police dispatch to the scene — which may have saved everyone’s life.

“This is a classic and terrifying case of domestic abuse, with violence masquerading as love,” Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan said. “The victim here is to be commended for having the courage and composure to call 911. She stopped what otherwise would have been a double murder.“

According to authorities, Brown kicked down the front door of his wife’s home on Sunday morning, and began a rampage of violence, torture and rape against the two women, police said. Brown allegedly terrorized the wife’s cousin, slashing her face with a box cutter, hitting her in the head with a wooden statue, choked the woman, and stabbed her in the chest — saying he would stab the cousin every time his wife spoke.

Authorities said Brown raped his wife and then threatened to kill both of them as well as himself.

But before that could happen, thanks to the 911 call, State Police were at the door. Hearing someone at the door, the wife suggested it was their daughter — and Brown sat down and told his wife to open the door and let her in. Instead of the daughter, it was State Police Troopers from the Avondale Barracks, who quickly moved to subdue Brown and offer emergency medical care to the victims, both of whom were transported to an area hospital.

The wife’s cousin required surgery for her wounds and was listed Wednesday as being in Serious but Stable condition.

Brown was remanded to Chester County Prison in Pocopson in lieu of $500,000 bail.

The attack highlights the danger for women in abusive relationships — especially at turning points.

“Unfortunately, we have seen over and over again that the time of greatest danger for a woman is the exact moment when she is separating herself from her partner,” said Deputy District Attorney Michelle Frei, the lead domestic violence prosecutor in Chester County. “This may include filing a PFA, filing for divorce, or just throwing him out of the house. We always tell women to be extremely careful during these high stress points.”

Hogan made it clear that there is nothing manly about spousal abuse.

“This defendant inflicted a savage attack on his wife and her cousin,” he said. “But he was as meek as a lamb when armed Troopers showed up. He is a classic bully and coward. Now he will have to face up to the Chester County justice system.”

Hogan said that Assistant District Attorney Ryan Borchik has been assigned to prosecute the case.

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