USMC veteran Paul Gonzalez, representing himself in court, had just heard that he would be ordered to pay Catherine Scott-Gonzalez, his wife and the mother of his children, ages 1 and 3, child support and follow a restrictive visitation schedule. He walked out of the courthouse quietly, but something made him change his mind about leaving, upon which he rushed into the courtroom, knocked his wife out with one blow, and began to pummel her mercilessly. The beating continued until police stormed in and tazed him twice, at which point his wife lay crumpled on the ground in a pool of blood with multiple facial fractures.
The wife had attempted on a couple prior occasions to obtain a restraining order against Mr. Gonzalez, but he had apparently never laid a hand on her before, so it was not granted. Nevertheless, there will doubtless be more calls for even easier restraining orders, despite the fact that in some cases it appears these orders actually provoke rather than restrain people.
In looking over the ABA article concerning the attack, I noticed that the comments make a lot of hay over Gonzales being an “abuser,” repeating the same crap that is gospel to those who want to justify their pecuniary interest in perpetuating crazy American family law. Here’s an example:
Absolutely nothing to do with child support guidelines provides even a remote justification for what happened. And what happened here is that this spousal abuser reacted to being systematically stripped of power and control by his spouse with the help of the court by trying, however briefly, to reassert his dominance by physically battering his wife.
Gonzales was not an abuser until he attacked his wife in front of the court, and attempting to explain the rage of a man who had just been ordered to pay his wife a large chunk of his take home salary and have restricted access to his children by saying it was only to “reassert his dominance” is patently stupid. Obviously, he attacked the woman because he felt the order was unfair, and he reacted as warriors sometimes do in response to provocation — violently. In fact, it’s a miracle that so few men react in this manner, and lawyers and judges know this well (there’s a reason metal detectors in courthouses followed right on the heels of Bradley and VAWA).
What likely happened in that courtroom is that Gonzalez, representing himself, got the shaft. That’s what happens when you don’t know your way around court rules. Lawyers will eat you for lunch. We don’t know what the child support order was, but it was probably pretty hefty (as usual), and the visitation quite meager. Add to that the fact that his wife was already living with another man, despite having so recently given birth to Mr. Gonzalez’s daughter, and the situation must have seemed absolutely upside-down to the former marine. It was upside down. His wife is obviously a little tramp who has no problem swinging from one dick to another even while raising two babies, and there she was about to get rewarded with an upgrade in lifestyle while the chump father loses his kids and wallet. That’s why Mr. Gonzalez lost it.
Here she is blubbering in front of the camera.
Now, beating your wife is always a bad idea. Even if it weren’t for over-the-top DV laws, grown-ups should know a lot better than to attack people in their family. And in the above example, the divorcĂ©e gets to go on camera making herself out to be a poor, innocent little victim. I highly doubt this woman is innocent. It seems pretty clear she left her husband for another man; how could it be otherwise if their daughter is only one and she already has a new boyfriend before her divorce was finalized? But now how does it look? She looks like the victim and these scumbags in the DV industry get to use this as propaganda for more laws that treat divorcing husbands and fathers like garbage.
So, men, if you face something like what caused Mr. Gonzalez to snap, don’t lose your cool. Don’t attack the woman; don’t go after the judge. Keep yourself out of jail and fight back intelligently. It’s hard at first, but in time you’ll learn how.
However, I’m afraid that more and more men, like Mr. Gonzalez, won’t get the message that there are other options until it’s too late.
Paul Gonzalez is currently in jail with bail set at $1 million (!), and faces years behind bars for a felony domestic assault charge.