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New York anchorman charged with choking his TV-journalist wife

February 19, 2013|By Michael Muskal
  • WCBS-TV anchor Rob Morrison in a booking photo released by the Darien, Conn., police.
WCBS-TV anchor Rob Morrison in a booking photo released by the Darien, Conn.,… (Darien Police Department )

A New York television anchorman appeared in a Connecticut court Tuesday to be arraigned on charges that he choked his wife, a fellow journalist, in an altercation at their home.

Rob Morrison, 44, appeared in Superior Court in Stamford, Conn., to face charges of second-degree strangulation, second-degree threatening and disorderly conduct, a court spokeswoman told the Los Angeles Times. Morrison, an anchorman for WCBS-TV, is free on a $100,000 bond after the alleged domestic dispute with his wife, Ashley, now an anchor for "CBS MoneyWatch."

About 1:30 a.m. Sunday, police in Darien, Conn., received a phone call from Morrison's mother-in-law reporting the domestic dispute, according to authorities. Police said Morrison was belligerent toward his wife during the evening and choked her with both hands.

While being processed on the charges, police said, Morrison shouted threats at his wife and at police.

Before his court appearance, Morrison denied that he had choked his wife and apologized for his conduct toward the police.

“I did not choke my wife. I have never laid my hands on my wife,” Morrison told reporters before entering the courtroom. “I was just as surprised by that particular charge as probably was everyone else who's heard about this story.

“I regret deeply how I acted toward the Darien Police Department Saturday night,” Morrison said. “I did not show them the respect they deserved. They were there to do a job, they're a fine department, they do a good job protecting the town in which I live and I sincerely apologize to them.

Morrison -- whose nose and upper lip still showed marks that apparently resulted from Sunday's incident  -- refused to answer questions about what happened.

“I love my wife more than anything. The past 10 years she has been the most important person in my life,” he said.

Morrison, an ex-Marine, is considered a top television journalist with two decades of experience. He worked for 10 years at WNBC before switching to WCBS in 2009. Ashley Morrison worked for Bloomberg Television before joining “CBS MoneyWatch.” They have a young son.

Morrison’s lawyer, Robert Skovgaard, said the incident had been overblown. On Monday, the couple issued a statement playing down the incident.

“The Morrisons are confident that a full review of this matter will show that the allegations have been greatly exaggerated,” the statement said. “While this matter is being addressed, Rob and Ashley hope that their family’s privacy will be respected.”

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