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Friday, June 14, 2024

Marion assistant public defender accused of punching wife, hitting her with laptop

An assistant public defender in Marion County was arrested last weekend after he was accused of punching his wife and striking her head with a laptop.

On Sunday, May 19, a Marion County Sheriff’s Office deputy responded to a local residence in reference to a domestic battery incident. Upon arrival at the home, the deputy made contact with the victim and a witness.

The victim stated that at around 7:30 p.m. that evening, she was discussing finances with her husband, 58-year-old Walter Leonard Flinn. During that conversation, Flinn allegedly stood up and “hit (the victim) over the head with his blue laptop,” according to the arrest report.

Walter Leonard Flinn (Photo: The Florida Bar)
Walter Leonard Flinn, 58, is an assistant public defender of the 5th Judicial Circuit. (Photo: The Florida Bar)

According to the victim’s statement, she raised her arms to protect her head from another blow. Flinn then allegedly punched her behind her jaw, which caused her earring to puncture the skin behind her ear.

The victim advised that Flinn broke the laptop by throwing it in the kitchen, and he then allegedly punched her near her “upper right rib.” The report stated that a witness inside the home overheard the commotion and quickly got in between the victim and Flinn.

The victim and witness both left the home, and they returned an hour later after they saw security camera footage showing that Flinn had left the area. According to the report, Flinn had taken his suit, unspecified “tools of the trade,” and the laptop before leaving in his vehicle.

While speaking with the deputy, the witness advised that they heard screaming in the kitchen. The witness stated that Flinn was “yelling about the expenses,” and he allegedly punched the victim before smashing the laptop on the floor.

The deputy noted in the report that the victim had a “large red mark (resembling) a fist” behind her jaw, and a puncture mark from her earring was visible behind her ear. In addition, the victim had a red wound on her elbow, which she stated was from blocking the laptop when Flinn allegedly tried to hit her with it.

A criminal history search of Flinn revealed no prior battery convictions.

Flinn was located and arrested on a domestic battery charge. He was then transported to Marion County Jail, and he had his first appearance in court on Tuesday, May 21.

Court records show that the case is scheduled to go to trial, with jury selection beginning at 8 a.m. on Monday, July 1.