Mount Vernon man to stand trial on firearm charge in domestic assault case

·1 min read

May 31—MOUNT VERNON, Mo. — Two felony domestic assault counts that a Mount Vernon man was facing were dismissed last week prior to a preliminary hearing at which he was ordered stand trial on a felony firearm offense.

Billy J. Nicholson, 33, was scheduled for a preliminary hearing Thursday in Lawrence County Circuit Court on counts of first-degree domestic assault, second-degree domestic assault and unlawful possession of a firearm.

The prosecutor's office dismissed the domestic assault charges prior to the hearing due to a lack of evidence, and the defendant then waived a hearing on the firearm offense. Associate Judge Matthew Kasper set Nicholson's initial appearance in a trial division on June 13.

Nicholson had been accused of choking his girlfriend and kicking her in the face during a domestic disturbance April 24 in which, records also state, he pushed her 10-year-old daughter down on a couch.

A probable-cause affidavit detailing the original charges states that the girlfriend subsequently locked herself and her daughter inside the house while Nicholson stomped around their yard with a loaded firearm screaming that he wanted the girlfriend to die.

Jeff Lehr is a reporter for The Joplin Globe.