by Maryjo Nuñez
A Yolo County man has been charged with domestic abuse, accused of failing to demonstrate restraint and physically assaulting his now-previous partner. On May 4, 2014, Michael Gene Corcoran and his partner began their day running errands. However, on their way back home, the pair engaged in an escalating disagreement which ultimately culminated in physical violence.
On August 21, 2018, the trial of Mr. Corcoran resumed with witness testimonies in Department 8 in the presence of Judge David W. Reed. Mr. Corcoran is charged in violation of Penal Code section 243 which outlines the offense as purposefully imposing violence or force upon one’s spouse or partner. Among the witnesses who testified was Mr. Corcoran’s previous partner, “MG” (who currently does not reside in California), and the man who intervened to stop their altercation.
Unfortunately, Mr. Corcoran and MG had experienced a falling out in their relationship. Even prior to the end of their romantic relationship, this relationship had always been—in MG’s description— “explosive.” She continued to describe their relationship with “good and bad times—the bad times [being] the fights and abuse, physical and mental,” and May 4, 2014, proved no exception.
According to MG, on May 4, 2014, Corcoran and MG shopped for toilets since Mr. Corcoran had apparently destroyed their toilet in a fit of anger. As the pair drove home, a quarrel erupted between the two. The dispute soon led to violence. While driving, Corcoran grabbed MG’s left hand with his right, and shouted at her so that she might hit him. When she refused, rather than return her hand, he then proceeded to use her hand to hit himself.
MG continued and said that eventually Mr. Corcoran stopped the vehicle and, upon parking, got outside, grabbed her torso and threw her on the ground. While she was on the ground, he then mounted himself over her and began throwing punches.
When asked if any of the punches landed, she initially replied that she did not remember, but she remained sure that if Mr. Corcoran had truly wanted to hit her with enough force to leave bruising, he could have. However, he did not do so. Yet when asked if Mr. Corcoran hit her face, she replied that it was possible, as a result of the commotion. She did confirm that he had hit her arms, as she had held her arms up in defense. She concluded her testimony by stating that two gentlemen of Caucasian descent approached them and pulled Mr. Corcoran off her.
In contrast to MG’s testimony, an African American gentleman, “KM,” appeared on the scene and was the one who stopped the altercation. According to KM, he was out on a test drive with a potential customer when the customer noticed a commotion in an SUV across the road and pointed it out to KM. Consequently, KM instructed the customer to drive back around so that they could see if any assistance was needed.
Indeed, KM’s assistance was required—as they approached the scene, KM observed Mr. Corcoran pulling MG’s hair to yank her out of the car, followed by his mounting her and attempting to hit her. KM stated he was unsure whether any punches had landed, because his main concern was to remove Mr. Corcoran from MG. When KM pulled Corcoran off, Corcoran then returned to his car without MG and drove away.
KM, the customer bystander, and MG called the authorities and remained at the scene until they arrived.
Mr. Corcoran’s trial remains ongoing.