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Police: Man forced wife's hands into hot frying oil over poorly seasoned chicken

Jeremiaih Crothers (Courtesy Columbia Co. Sheriff's Office)

Columbia County Sheriff's deputies say a Clatskanie man is accused of forcing his wife's hands into hot frying oil, and strangling his infant son.

Deputies were called to a home in the 19000 block of Swedetown Road around 8 p.m. last Tuesday. They say the suspect, 34-year-old Jeremiah D. Crothers had fled the scene, leaving his wife and child behind after allegedly assaulting them.

According to court documents, Crothers allegedly covered the mouth and nose of their 7-month-old son until his legs turned blue Tuesday morning. Crothers' wife used a frying pan to strike her husband's head, which also led him to release their young son.

Later that evening, as she was making fried chicken on the stove, Crothers complained she hadn't seasoned the chicken, court documents said. Crothers then grabbed her hand and stuck it in the boiling oil, according to court documents.

Police were called to the scene, but Crothers had already left.

He was found in St. Helens early Wednesday morning and arrested on charges of attempted murder, strangulation, assault, coercion and attempted assault.

His bail has been set at $217,750.

"The allegations in support of this arrest are alarming," said Sheriff Jeff Dickerson in a news release. "Domestic violence is a scourge that our deputies frequently encounter. Fortunately, we were able to find the suspect in a timely manner and put a stop to the violence, and give this mom and child a chance to survive."

According to court documents Crothers had previously threatened his wife with knives.

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