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Man accused of holding girlfriend is charged with witness tampering

Published: Monday, March 11 2013 7:08 p.m. MDT

MILLCREEK — A man accused of holding his former girlfriend against her will to keep her from testifying against him in court has been charged with tampering with a witness and unlawful detention.

In addition to charges of third-degree felony tampering with a witness and the misdemeanor detention charge, Shawn Patrick Crawford, 34, also faces charges for aggravated assault and aggravated burglary, both third-degree felonies. Crawford was charged Monday in 3rd District Court.

Crawford was arrested in August for investigation of domestic violence and was scheduled to appear in court March 5. His former girlfriend, Deborah Hansen, had been subpoenaed to testify in the case. But on March 1, police said Crawford forced his way into Hansen's home and held her there for three days. He had been told upon his release from jail that he was not to contact Hansen.

Crawford told Hansen he wanted her to lie in court, at one point pushing her into the wall and strangling her, and threatening to kill her and her grandson unless she complied, charges state. 

"He said we needed to come to some type of mutual agreement where I would go in there and lie and say I didn't know what they were talking about, that I am crazy and that I lied," Hansen told the Deseret News earlier this month.

Crawford is accused of preventing Hansen from leaving the house, barricading the door with a couch. Hansen eventually escaped when she convinced Crawford to walk with her to a nearby store. When they arrived, Hansen ran back to the home, ducking in an unlocked door and closing it behind her while she called police, according to charges.

Crawford was convicted in 2008 of a domestic violence and is subject to enhanced penalties.

E-mail: mromero@deseretnews.com

Twitter: McKenzieRomero

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