Man tries to kill girlfriend over crack, police say

Norman Miller

A Framingham man was arrested Thursday because he attacked his girlfriend when she could not give him money for crack cocaine, authorities said.

Mark Duarte, 37, was also charged with trying to kill his 29-year-old girlfriend two days earlier because he could not raise enough money to buy the illegal drug, police said.

Several officers went to 46 Gordon St. at 2:19 a.m. after a noise complaint and found the victim, Christine Chartier, sitting in the rooming house's common kitchen with a bloody face, according to an affidavit filed in Framingham District Court by Officer Al Blais.

She told the officers her boyfriend, Duarte, had punched her in the face. She said he ordered her to go to an ATM to withdraw money so he could buy crack, but when she could not get any money, he hit her. He threatened "to punch her teeth down her throat," she said.

Duarte quickly denied the allegations.

"He stated that Chartier was hitting him and that he did not hit her," Blais wrote. "When asked about the blood on Chartier's face, Duarte stated that he pushed Chartier away from him and she fell, hitting her face on a stereo speaker."

Duarte was arrested and charged with assault and battery, but several other charges were later added after Chartier told police about an attack on Tuesday, Officer James Antonio said in an affidavit he filed in court.

Chartier told police that on Tuesday, Duarte wanted money for crack so he left looking for money. He failed to get any and came back angry and attacked her, she said.

"He entered the victim's room and began to strangle her around her throat and stated to her, 'I'm going to kill you if you don't get money,' " Antonio said in the affidavit.

Duarte was charged with assault with the intent to murder, a second count of assault and battery and threatening to commit a crime for that incident.

Duarte pleaded not guilty at his Framingham District Court arraignment on Thursday. He was ordered held on $1,500 bail and he is due back in court on Sept. 26 for a pretrial conference.