Thursday, March 12
PITTSFIELD — A woman who allegedly intended to artificially inseminate her wife with her brother's semen has been charged with domestic assault and battery.
Pittsfield police responded to a call shortly before 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in the city's Morningside neighborhood, where the assault allegedly occurred.
Stephanie K. Lighten, 26, was released on personal recognizance after denying the allegations in Central Berkshire District Court Wednesday morning.
Jennifer A. Lighten, 33, told police that Stephanie Lighten, her wife, was "all liquored up" when she returned to their Lincoln Street apartment, where the defendant then allegedly tried to use a syringe to inseminate her, according to a police report.
Jennifer told investigating officers that Stephanie "has been talking about trying to impregnate (her) for some time," police said.
According to a report by Pittsfield Police Officer Kipp D. Steinman: "Jennifer said that Stephanie had a 'turkey baster and her brother's semen in a sealed container.' Jennifer said she told Stephanie that she didn't want to get pregnant." The device was actually a large syringe with a catheter tip, police said, and it was still in its original package when officers confiscated the item.
That's allegedly when Stephanie threw Jennifer on the couch, grabbed at her clothes and threatened to impregnate her, police said.
Jennifer broke free, ran into the bathroom and locked the door. Stephanie "then broke the bathroom door down," police said, hurting her wrist in the process.
When Stephanie went to retrieve an ice pack from the freezer, Jennifer bolted from the apartment and attempted to get away in the couple's sport utility vehicle, police said.
As Jennifer pulled away from the scene, Stephanie "jumped on the side of their vehicle, swung the door open and made (Jennifer) stop," Steinman said.
According to Officer John Bassi, a witness at the scene claimed Stephanie "was hanging on the SUV door handle, trying to get into the car." Amber Hunt told Bassi that Stephanie nearly caused an accident when the vehicle narrowly missed hitting a tree in the front yard of Hunt's Spring Street home.
Police arrested Stephanie Lighten near the intersection of Spring and Curtis streets in Morningside.
Police also confiscated the container of semen and some aluminum foil, which was originally used to hold the semen. Nicholas Lighten, Stephanie Lighten's brother, was the donor, according to police.
Detective Thomas H. Harrington said Jennifer Lighten declined "to go forward with charges of assault with intent to rape" because she did not believe "Stephanie was going to sexually assault her with the syringe." However, Harrington informed the alleged victim that attempted rape charges could be filed if she changes her mind.
Stephanie Lighten was represented by attorney Thomas J. Donahue Jr. at Wednesday's arraignment.
Judge Rita S. Koenigs ordered Lighten to "refrain from abuse" and to return to court for an April 29 pretrial hearing.
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