Stephen Bannon, the new CEO of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, was once charged with misdemeanor domestic violence in the 1990s, though the charges were dropped, according to media reports.
Bannon’s then-wife told the Santa Monica Police Department that he’d pulled at her neck and wrist during an argument about money in January 1996 and smashed a telephone as she tried to contact police, Politico and the New York Post first reported.
A police officer, in a filed report, noted that there were “red marks on her left wrist and the right side of her neck.” Bannon’s former wife declined an emergency protection order, the report stated.
Bannon, who is on leave as chairman of the conservative Breitbart News to oversee Trump’s campaign, was charged with misdemeanor domestic violence, battery and dissuading a witness.
He pleaded not guilty to the charges. The case was dismissed in August 1996 when his ex-wife didn’t appear for the trial.
The New York Post reported that Bannon had pressured the woman to leave town. The couple was divorced shortly after the trial.
The Trump campaign didn’t respond to calls or emails requesting comment. Bannon’s spokeswoman, Alexandra Preate, told McClatchy in an email that “Mr. Bannon and his ex-wife and his children (have) a great relationship.”
The revelations about Bannon come as he is trying to reshape a Trump campaign that has struggled to appeal to female voters.
A McClatchy-Marist poll earlier this month showed Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton holding a 20-point advantage over Trump among women.