By Sheriff Scott Lindsey, Texas County Sheriff’s Dept.
On May 29, 2022, Texas County deputies were dispatched to assist the Licking Police Department with a domestic disturbance on Maple Avenue.
After investigation by both departments, it was determined that an assault occurred on Hartville Road south of the city limit. A female victim stated she was driving a vehicle on Hartville Road with a male passenger identified as Baltazar Ruiz. The female said she stopped the vehicle and requested that Ruiz get out. The female reported that Ruiz exited the vehicle and pointed a handgun at her, threatening to kill her. The female stated Ruiz fired a shot into the air and then pulled her from the vehicle and started punching her. The female reported Ruiz put her back in the vehicle and choked her until she lost consciousness. The victim and suspect traveled into Licking and were contacted by an LPD officer. A search of the vehicle led to the discovery of a .45 caliber handgun.
A records check on Ruiz revealed he was a convicted felon and currently on parole for assault. Ruiz was taken into custody and transported to the Texas County Jail.
Baltazar J. Ruiz, age 31, of Waynesville, was incarcerated in the Texas County Jail.
Texas County Prosecuting Attorney Parke Stevens charged Ruiz with Domestic Assault 1st Degree, Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, and Unlawful Use of a Weapon. Ruiz was ordered held in the Texas County Jail without bond.
The above charges are mere accusations and are not evidence of guilt. Evidence in support of the charges must be presented before a court of competent jurisdiction whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.