State senator avoids domestic violence arrest - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

State senator avoids domestic violence arrest

PHOENIX (CNN) - An Arizona state Senator avoided arrest Saturday after being involved in a domestic violence situation along a Phoenix road.

Police found Arizona Senate Majority Leader Scott Bundgaard fighting with his girlfriend of seven months, Aubry Ballard. She was arrested, but he was not because of a state law.

Bundgaard admits there was an argument that got out of hand as he drove Ballard home from a Friday night fundraiser.

"She started throwing stuff out of my car onto the freeway and threatening to throw herself out onto the freeway," Bundgaard said. "She struck me in the face a few times, one time with her phone."

Bundgaard says he pulled over and stopped near the median. He says he didn't want to lose control of the car and wanted to get his stuff. When he got back to the car, he said Ballard was in the driver's seat.

"When I got back to the vehicle and asked her to get out of the driver's seat, and she didn't so I took her out," Bundgaard said.

An off-duty officer saw the car in the median and a man pulling a woman from the car.

Officers said both Bundgaard and Ballard had marks on them indicating they had been in a physical altercation. Bundgaard had a busted lip and black eye.

Police have not released the full extent of Ballard's injuries, but confirm she had scraped knees.

"I'm not going to press charges against her," Bundgaard said. "She is a good woman with a good heart, and you know, people make mistakes and it is unfortunate."

Police took both Bundgaard and Ballard into custody. Ballard was booked for simple assault. Bundgaard was released pending possible charges because as a lawmaker in session, he has immunity from arrest.

"I don't think anyone ever envisions this kind of a thing happening to them in their relationship," Bundgaard said.

Bundgaard said his girlfriend's knees were scraped when he pulled her out of the car.

Arizona law says state lawmakers have immunity from arrest in all cases except for treason and felony while the legislature is in session.

However, Bundgaard could be charged after the session concludes.

The couple says neither of them plan to press charges and revealed they are breaking up.

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