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By Lisa Redmond


AYER — A 33-year-old Shirley man is being held without bail on attempted-murder charges after Shirley police say he choked and tried to run over his fiancee with his car after the couple fought about him drinking too much.

After a dangerousness hearing on Monday, Ayer District Court Judge James Barretto ordered Mark E. Buxton Jr., of 14B Tolman Ave., held without bail on two counts each of attempted murder, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon. He is also charged with assault and battery and intimidation of a witness.

According to court documents, the victim was reluctant to have Buxton arrested because there is a lot going on in his life. Buxton’s 15-year-old son, Corey Buxton, of Shirley, was hit and killed by a car when he tried to chase the man who robbed him and a friend of $20 during a Jan. 4 robbery outside an Ayer pizza shop.

Robert Malcolm, 17, of Ayer, has been charged with assault and robbery in connection with the alleged incident that triggered Corey Buxton’s death.

But prosecutors note that Buxton has a criminal record that dates to 1996 and includes assault, motor-vehicle and drug charges. A 2010 drunken-driving case in Ayer District Court was continued without a finding.

In Mark Buxton’s case, court documents state Shirley police responded at 11:45 p.m. on Aug. 1 to 14B Tolman Ave. for a report of a domestic disturbance. They found the victim sitting on the back steps with red marks visible on her chest and neck.

The victim told police that earlier in the day, Buxton had come home from work drunk. He continued to drink throughout the evening. When the couple went upstairs to go to bed, the victim told police she expressed her concerns about Buxton drinking so much, something that had been happening more often.

The victim told police that Buxton flew into a rage, punching her in the forehead, throwing her against a wall, choking her and destroying items in their apartment, according to court documents.

When she grabbed a phone to call the police, he threw it against a wall, breaking it, court documents state.

The victim was able to grab her cellphone and run out the front door to the end of the driveway to call police, documents state. As she stood in the driveway, the victim told police that Buxton got into his car and backed it down the driveway, hitting her with the trunk, then he drove off, court documents state.

When police arrived, the victim was taken to the hospital to be treated for neck pain and a headache. She took out an abuse-prevention order which expired the next day.

Police were initially unable to locate Buxton, using his cellphone to track his whereabouts to Fitchburg. He was arrested and arraigned last Thursday.

Buxton’s next court date is a pretrial conference scheduled for Sept. 5 pending a possible indictment to Superior Court.