PEABODY — A suspended Peabody police sergeant, who is charged with abusing and attempting to strangle his girlfriend during a dispute in August, was arraigned Wednesday on two new charges, both stemming from incidents the woman told police occurred earlier in their relationship.
Brendan O'Brien, 42, of Peabody, pleaded not guilty in Salem District Court to two new assault and battery charges related to alleged incidents from last New Year's Eve and in the latter part of May involving the same woman.
The incidents, which the woman disclosed to police shortly after the Aug. 24 incident in O'Brien's former apartment on Buxton Street, include an accusation that he slapped her and pushed her out of bed on New Year's Eve, and that he had struck her, giving her a black eye in May.
Prosecutor Haleigh Reisman asked Judge Carol-Ann Fraser to impose the same conditions set last month by Judge Randy Chapman, who agreed to release O'Brien from pretrial detention.
Those conditions include house arrest at his parents' Peabody home, a GPS monitor, an alcohol monitor, no contact with the woman or any other witnesses, no possession of weapons, continued counseling for mental health and substance abuse, and no use of social media.
That last condition was the result of an incident shortly after O'Brien's arraignment, when he allegedly changed his Facebook user name, then "liked" a post that the woman had made on the social media site.
Prosecutors have obtained a court order for Facebook to turn over records of that time period but had not yet received a response.
O'Brien's lawyer, Kenneth Anderson, had previously filed a motion for the woman's ambulance records, which had been provided to the court; Fraser agreed to a request by both the defense lawyer and the prosecutor to get copies of those records from the clerk's office after confirming that the woman did not object.
O'Brien is due back in court on Dec. 11 for further proceedings in all of the pending cases.
The cases are being heard in Salem because of O'Brien's prior work in the Peabody District Court, which could create the appearance of a conflict.
Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @SNJulieManganis.