NEW BRITAIN – A Berlin man is facing home invasion and assault charges after he allegedly forced his way into a city apartment and then struck a man over the head with a glass bottle during a struggle.
Juan Laboy, 25, of 389 New Britain Road, Berlin, had no criminal record before the incident occurred on June 14, court officials said during his arraignment Monday.
Laboy arrived at the apartment of a former female partner to bring her two children back at around 8 a.m. that day and wound up forcing his way into her apartment because she refused to open the door, a warrant for Laboy’s arrest said. Laboy damaged the door as he made his way in and then went looking for the male guest that the woman had allowed to sleep over, witnesses said.
Laboy then attacked the man who was in the bathroom as the woman tried to get her children to safety, the warrant said. Laboy grabbed a bottle and struck the man over the head with it and bit the man several times, police said. He then fled the apartment, witnesses said. The man had cuts and bite marks on his arms, leg, shoulder and back area, police said. He also had bruises on his stomach, chest and back. Responding officers found blood and broken glass in the apartment. The man was taken to the Hospital of Central Connecticut to be treated for his injuries.
Laboy was served with an arrest warrant charging him with home invasion, first-degree burglary with injuries, disorderly conduct, second-degree criminal mischief, second-degree reckless endangerment, two counts of risk of injury to a child, and second-degree assault.
Attorney John Kennelly representing Laboy during his arraignment Monday argued that his client didn’t commit a home invasion, a felony with a minimum 10-year prison sentence, because “there wasn’t a stick of furniture” in the apartment. “A reading of the facts shows this was not a dwelling,” Kennelly said.
Police noted in the warrant that the injured man was found sitting in a rocking chair with a towel on the most serious gash when officers arrived. The warrant had been signed by New Britain Superior Court Judge Julia Dewey indicating probable cause for the arrest had been found, said Judge Suzanne Caron who was presiding over the arraignment.
Caron issued a protective order barring Laboy from contacting the victim, the woman and her children and stipulated that if he posted bond he’d have to wear electronic monitoring.
Laboy posted $50,000 bond following the arraignment.
Lisa Backus can be reached at 860-801-5066 or Lbackus@centralctcommunications.com.