Former Marine not guilty of biting off cabbie's nose in West Fargo due to PTSD
A Tower City man is not criminally responsible for biting off a cab driver's nose last November, due to his post-traumatic stress disorder, a Cass County judge found Wednesday.
Doctors from Fargo's Veterans Affairs Medical Center and from the North Dakota State Hospital agreed after examining Dominique Martinez that he suffers from PTSD following his service with the Marines in Afghanistan.
That's according to both prosecutors and Martinez's defense attorney, who spoke at a hearing Wednesday in Martinez's case in Cass County District Court.
Judge Tom Olson found Martinez wasn't criminally responsible for his actions and remanded him to the custody of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center for five years.
Martinez was also accused of biting off part of his wife's cheek during the Nov. 23 incident in West Fargo, which severed the nose of the cabbie, Makruun Hagar, permanently disfiguring him.
Martinez, who was 22 years old at the time of the attack, was charged with two Class C felony counts of assault and interfering with a 911 call, also a Class felony.
Court documents say Martinez had fallen asleep in the back of Hagar's cab as he was driving the couple home after a night out. When she tried to wake her husband, he attacked her, prompting Hagar to call the police, upon which Martinez bit
off the end of Hagar's nose.
Martinez's wife told police her husband has a history of assaulting and biting her, and had been in trouble as a Marine for biting another Marine.
Martinez admitted in court he'd bitten both his wife and Hagar and interfered with Hagar's attempt to summon help by dialing 911.
In addition to his time he must stay at a VA hospital, Martinez is also prohibited from having contact with Hagar, and his wife.
The couple is in the midst of pursuing a divorce, attorneys said.