Judge dismisses assault charge
By KANTELE FRANKO
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
YOUNGSTOWN -- Municipal court Judge Elizabeth A. Kobly dismissed a felonious assault charge against Matthew Lambert and set a pretrial date of Wednesday for five misdemeanor charges at a preliminary hearing Thursday.
Lambert, 31, of Selma Avenue, will face charges of aggravated menacing, criminal damaging, mishandling a firearm in a motor vehicle, failing to drive within marked lanes and disobeying a traffic control device.
After hearing testimony from three witnesses, Judge Kobly cited insufficient evidence when dismissing the felonious assault charge.
Judge Kobly reset bond to $13,000, a significant decrease from the previous bond of $220,000, and ordered Lambert to have no contact with his 30-year-old wife.
Police believe Lambert might have tried to kill her if he had not been caught in a routine traffic stop July 5. When police pulled Lambert over, they found an open box of 12-gauge shotgun shells on his front seat and a loaded shotgun in his trunk.
Police Chief Robert E. Bush Jr. has said the arrest likely prevented a homicide.
The gun and traffic charges had been combined with charges of felonious assault, menacing and criminal damaging from July 3.
At the arraignment, assistant city prosecutor Bassil Ally told the judge that Lambert also had been convicted of domestic violence and carrying a concealed weapon.