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Charging docs accuse BPD officer of violently abusing wife

Posted at 4:07 PM, Sep 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-24 23:39:41-04

BALTIMORE — Charging documents describe the unstable behavior of a Baltimore City Police officer, towards his wife who he allegedly abused and threatened several times over the last couple years.

Matthew Chrest faces nine different counts of assault and firearms charges.

It all started August 1, when the Harford County Sheriffs Office was called to Chrest's home in Bel Air.

His wife reported he was suffering a mental breakdown and punching himself over fear of losing his job.

Chrest told responding deputies that he was about to serve a suspension at work over a 2018 DUI.

He apparently had been working a lot of overtime hours to make up for the income he was about to lose, and was running short on sleep causing him to be stressed.

At the time, Chrest convinced deputies he wasn't a threat to himself or others, but asked for them to get him help.

So they did, by taking him to an area family crisis center.

Deputies ended up recovering multiple pistols from Chrest's friend who was holding them for safekeeping, amid an ongoing protective order.

His duty weapon had already been taken from him by his department.

Nearly a month later, deputies interviewed Chrest's wife. She detailed three prior incidents in 2019 and 2020, where Chrest became violent with her.

On each occasion Chrest is accused of pulling a handgun and assaulting her.

The latest incident happened on St. Patrick's Day 2020, when his relative was at their house.

Chrest reportedly pointed a gun at her after she tried intervening in a fight between the relative and him.

Another alleged incident happened in January of this year, which Chrest's wife happened to record on her phone.

During all three arguments, charging documents suggest Chrest was concerned about his wife leaving him, and threatened to kill her then himself, if she did.

Investigators spoke with Chrest's relative following the St. Patrick's Day incident.

She recalled her sister begging her not to call police, out of fear her husband would get in trouble.

After each outburst, court documents say Chrest would become highly emotional and apologetic.

Court records show Chrest was released on $20,000 bond on Wednesday.

As for the DUI, that case is closed. Chrest was ultimately sentenced to probation before judgment.

Baltimore Police say Chrest was suspended.