Trooper convicted of punching girlfriend gets probation

SALEM, Mass. (AP) — A suspended Massachusetts state trooper who was convicted of punching his former girlfriend in the head has received probation.

A Salem Superior Court jury convicted Thomas Downs of assault and battery Tuesday after a five-day trial.

Prosecutors said the victim was attempting to leave the Salisbury home she shared with Downs on Feb. 22, 2015, when he blocked her car from leaving and punched her in the head several times. She suffered multiple contusions.

Downs was acquitted of a suffocation charge.

Judge Timothy Feeley sentenced Downs to two years of probation. He also ordered Downs to complete a batterer’s intervention program, to undergo a substance abuse evaluation and to have no contact with the victim.

Downs said during his trial that he never punched or tried to suffocate the woman.

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