Minnesota’s elected and appointed officials are typically subjected to heightened scrutiny in their day to day lives. As a result, any arrest of a public official usually ends up as a widely reported story. Washington County Commissioner Bill Pulkrabek’s recent arrest is no different.
Late Monday afternoon, Pulkrabek, the former Oakdale mayor, was arrested on suspicion of committing two crimes: felony domestic assault by strangulation, and misdemeanor fifth-degree domestic assault. According to the alleged victim, Pulkrabek and the victim got into a heated argument. Pulkrabek then allegedly threw the victim onto the bed, placed his arm across her neck, grabbed her by the hair, and pulled her down the stairs and out the door. The alleged victim did not require medical attention.
Through his attorney, Pulkrabek denied all allegations. Pulkrabek has not been formally charged with any crime related to this incident. The investigation is ongoing. Even though the alleged crime occurred in Washington County, in order to avoid any potential conflict of interest, the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office, not the Washington County Attorney’s Office, will be prosecuting the offense.
Defending yourself against a domestic violence allegation can seem daunting. Not only do you face the possibility of jail or prison time, but domestic violence convictions carry serious collateral consequences, including loss of a job, loss of rights to bear firearms, and orders for protection that may bar you from contacting certain persons. However, if you have an attorney on your side with extensive experience defending domestic assault allegations, your defenses can be much stronger.