An Upper Darby man brutally beat a woman, broke her jaw and then barricaded himself inside of his house on Monday, all because he believed the victim stole his loose change, police said.
Charles Miller, 57, of Cloverdale Avenue near Lynn Boulevard, has been charged with aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person and related offenses for the incident, which began shortly after noon on Monday.
According to police, a 35-year-old woman who had met Miller for the first time Sunday night stayed over at his house. When she went to leave the next day, Miller accused the woman of stealing his loose change because he heard some coins jingling inside of her purse, police said.
Miller then pointed what the woman believed was a rifle at her before he set the gun down, grabbed her hair and started to beat her in the face and head with his fist, said Upper Darby police Superintendent Michael Chitwood. He allegedly tried to suffocate the woman as well, before she broke free and ran next door to a neighbor, who dialed 9-1-1.
The victim's relationship with Miller was so new that she couldn't even provide police his name when they arrived on scene because she did not know it, Chitwood said. The victim also had trouble speaking in general due to the severity of her injuries, according to the police report.
"Upon arrival, officers observed that the female was bleeding from several areas all over her face and appeared to be suffering from a possible broken jaw," the report said. "The victim had severe difficult speaking and could not keep her mouth closed which caused her to drool uncontrollably."
Believing that Miller was armed, officers surrounded the house and tried to contact him through a phone and through a loud speaker with no success. They then broke down his door and found him hiding in the basement, according to police.
It was later discovered that the rifle Miller brandished at the victim was a BB rifle, police said.
Chitwood called Miller's house "a real sh-- joint" and said that neighbors on scene told police that it was "a total drug house."
"He's supposedly works in construction," Chitwood said, of Miller. "I wouldn't have him fix a crack in my f----ing toenail, let alone do construction."
Miller remains at the Delaware County Prison on $75,000 bail.