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Friday, June 14, 2024

Elderly Ocala man accused of punching wife in Bob Evans parking lot

An elderly Ocala man is facing a felony battery charge after several employees at a local restaurant allegedly saw him punching his wife in the parking lot.

On Friday, May 17, a Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputy responded to the Bob Evans restaurant located at 11300 SW 95th Circle in Ocala in reference to a physical altercation between an elderly couple.

Upon arrival at the incident location, the deputy made contact with a Bob Evans employee who advised that she saw a man in the parking lot, later identified as 82-year-old John Joseph Simonin, who was attempting to get his wife out of a vehicle. The employee stated that Simonin was then observed striking his wife on the top of her head, which caused her to “fall back into the car,” according to the arrest report.

John Joseph Simonin, 82, of Ocala
John Joseph Simonin, 82, of Ocala

Another Bob Evans employee told the deputy that she was looking out a window near the carryout door in the restaurant when she saw Simonin attempt to help his wife out of the car. According to the second employee’s statement, Simonin “(got) angry and starting yelling at the victim” before allegedly striking the victim’s head.

The report stated that a third witness also spoke with the deputy and advised that Simonin had “(struck) the victim in the arm with force” while attempting to get her out of the car.

The deputy made contact with the victim who advised that she did not remember the entire incident. She stated that she had recently suffered a stroke, which is why she needed assistance with exiting the vehicle, according to the report.

The victim told the deputy that “this is not the first time” that Simonin had struck her, though she was unable to provide any further details.

The deputy located Simonin. After being read his Miranda rights, Simonin stated he was “having a hard time” getting his wife out of the vehicle, and he admitted to grabbing her arms.

When asked about the punches that were allegedly thrown during the incident, Simonin stated that he “does not remember that.” However, he admitted that he may have punched his wife since he “gets frustrated that (she) needs help.”

During the post-Miranda interview, Simonin further admitted that he has struck his wife in the past because he “gets angry at her for needing help.”

Simonin was arrested and transported to Marion County Jail, where he is currently being held on a $1,000 bond. He is being charged with battery on a person 65 years of age or older, which is a felony.

A court date has been scheduled at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 18, according to jail records.