GCPD: Officer pointed gun, threatened to kill wife

A Gaston County Police officer was arrested for allegedly pointing a gun at his wife on Christmas Eve while their three children were present.

GASTON COUNTY, N.C. -- A Gaston County Police officer was arrested for allegedly pointing a gun at his wife on Christmas Eve while their three children were present. 

Timothy Leophard, 42, made his first court appearance Wednesday on three charges of assault with a deadly weapon with a minor present. 

Police say Leophard pointed an AR-style rifle at his wife and threatened to kill her, all while his three daughters, ages 9, 10 and 14, were present. 

According to the arrest warrant, Leophard shoved his wife against a wall and threatened, "I will kill you."

A 911 call obtained by NBC Charlotte gives a disturbing glimpse into the home during the encounter. You can hear a number of people screaming in the background which lasts for several minutes.

"That's his family, he wishes that it never happened," says attorney David Phillips, who admits Leophard had too much to drink that day. "But he's gotta be the man that he is and face those charges."

Phillips says his client uses alcohol to self-medicate. He says Leophard is a war veteran who suffers from PTSD.

In 2015, Leophard was on a call with the Gaston County Police Department when he was shot in the line of duty. He has been on leave ever since and receives treatment services through the V.A. and the County.

Gaston County Police say that while Leophard is no longer a police officer, the County will fulfill its obligations in relation to being shot while serving the citizens. 

Phillips says Leophard needs help, not jail time.

"He needs to be out to receive those services."

Phillips said at the bond hearing Wednesday that his client is not safe being jail because he's a police officer. 

The judge set his bond at $100,000. 

Copyright 2016 WCNC


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