A high-ranking Howard County police commander has been charged in Baltimore County with trying to run over her husband with a car Sunday, authorities said yesterday.
Capt. Tara D. Nelson, 43, ran the Criminal Investigations Bureau, which investigates homicides, assaults and robberies. She has been placed on leave, and her police powers have been suspended, police said.
Nelson, of Woodstock, is accused of running into the motorcycles of her husband and one of his friends and trying to hit the two men with her Lexus during an argument with her husband Sunday afternoon, according to charging documents filed in District Court in Catonsville.
She is charged with three counts of first-degree assault and three counts of second-degree assault, court records show.
Neither man was injured, the court papers show. Baltimore County police said that Nelson told them she was upset when she found receipts from a restaurant and a hotel that she said were further evidence of her husband's infidelity. Police said that she told them she was trying to destroy the Lexus, which was a gift from her husband, and his motorcycle, according to the court documents.
Police also wrote in the court papers that Nelson said she did not know where her husband and his friend were standing when she hit a tree in her yard and the motorcycle.
Nelson's husband also told Baltimore County police that she had held her service weapon to his head to get him to sign papers to sell their house about a month ago. He told police he did not report the incident because he didn't "want her arrested," the court documents state.
After her initial appearance in District Court, the police commander was released on her own recognizance and ordered not to have unlawful contact with those involved in the incident, court records show.
Nelson, an African-American, was the first minority woman to become a captain in the Howard County Police Department.
During her 20-year tenure, Nelson has served as a lieutenant in charge of the department's education and training division. She has worked in patrol, media and community relations, criminal investigations, management services and information management, Howard County police said.