Freeport man accused of strangling woman during argument in toy store

LOWER BURRELL, Pa. — A Freeport man is accused of strangling a woman during an argument in a toy store.

According to our news partners at the Trib, the woman showed Lower Burrell police a video of the interior of Fidget Tree on Leechburg Road.

The Trib reported that shortly after 6 p.m. on Nov. 8, police were called to Glen’s Custard for a reported domestic situation.

An employee reportedly told police that she saw a woman running across the street from the toy store into the ice cream shop’s bathroom.

An employee told police that the man, identified as 39-year-old Jaison Lacava, and the woman got into a heated argument in the toy store. She left so that the argument wouldn’t escalate, the Trib said.

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The Trib also said that the woman told police it wasn’t a physical altercation and that she wanted him to stay away from her for the rest of the evening.

Lacava arrived at the ice cream shop while police were speaking to the woman. He said they began to argue when he got a text from a friend and she said it came from another woman, the Trib reported.

Lacava told police that he grabbed the woman by the shoulder but didn’t do anything else to hurt her.

Later in the evening, the woman went to the Lower Burrell police station and said she wanted to file criminal charges. She showed police a video recording from inside the toy store showing Lacava grabbing her by the upper arm and then doing a leg sweep to knock her to the ground, the Trib reported.

The Trib also said that a short time later in the video, while the woman was walking behind Lacava, he spun around and tried to kick her legs out from under her.

The video then showed Lacava grabbing her by the neck and pushing her against the wall before they both fell to the ground, the Trib said.

The woman told police she couldn’t breathe, and that Lacava punched her several times while they were on the ground. Lacava also threatened to kill her.

Lacava has been charged with a felony count of strangulation and counts of simple assault, making terroristic threats and harassment.

Lacava was released from Westmoreland County Jail after posting 10% of his bond and has a preliminary hearing scheduled for Jan. 31.

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