• St. Johns County deputy arrested for hitting woman in face

    By: Brittney Donovan , Action News Jax


    UPDATE, Nov. 9, 2017: The charges against Mr. O'Connell were dropped. The case is closed. 


    A St. Johns County deputy was arrested for hitting a woman in face with a closed fist, according to an arrest report.

    Scott O'Connell, brother of Michelle O'Connell, is facing a domestic battery charge after the altercation on July 5.

    The victim told deputies that she and O'Connell were sitting in a bedroom watching a movie when she began to cry.

    RELATED: St. Johns County Sheriff's Office, Michelle O'Connell case highlighted in New York Times article

    She said O'Connell responded to her coldly and called her a "whore."

    The woman told deputies she told O'Connell she wished he would die, but then immediately apologized.

    She said he then hit her in the face with a closed fist, the arrest report said.

    Deputies said her eye was slightly puffy and red.

    In a subsequent interview at the sheriff's office, the victim told deputies that O'Connell has been mentally abusive since 2011. She said this wasn't the first time O'Connell has insulted her.

    She said O'Connell is loving toward her one day, and the next calls her a whore, fat, ugly and stupid.

    When asked if O'Connell has ever threatened to kill her or her children, she said no but he "wishes I would kill myself or get T-boned and die."

    RELATED: Doctor hired by Michelle O'Connell family says her fractured jaw not from gun recoil

    She also told deputies that she thought he was capable of killing her if he was in jeopardy of losing his job.

    During an interview with deputies, O'Connell denied he has ever hit her.

    He was arrested and booked at the St. Johns County Jail.

    O'Connell's sister Michelle died on Sept. 2, 2010. Officials ruled it a suicide but family has consistently maintained that it was a homicide.

    Officials say she used her boyfriend's service weapon to shoot herself.

    A New York Times article recently highlighted her death and the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office's handling of the case.

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