Suburban Chicago police officer charged with battering wife and kids

An off-duty suburban Chicago police officer has been charged in Indiana with choking his wife to the point of unconsciousness as their three children looked on, according to court records.

Dino Pavoni, 38, of Midlothian, Illinois, is charged with felony strangulation, four counts of felony domestic battery and interference with reporting of a crime following the altercation early Sunday while the family was staying at a trailer park in Portage, Indiana.

The charges allege that in addition to attacking his wife, Pavoni pushed one of his daughters who was recording video of the attack with her cellphone and slammed his other daughter with a door several times. The couple’s son wasn’t harmed.

Pavoni, who is a police officer in Crestwood, Illinois, got upset when his wife woke him to ask for help closing the camper’s awning, according to the arrest records. According to investigators, the cellphone video shows Pavoni arguing with his wife while a child asks him to stop and accuses him of being drunk. It also shows him striking his wife in the head and then holding her up by her neck against the wall before slamming her to the ground.

According to police reports, Pavoni told officers called to the scene by one of the children that his wife was the aggressor and he twice denied striking her. He said he was trying to restrain his wife by holding her against the wall when she had a seizure and fell face down on the floor. Investigators say Pavoni stopped cooperating with them when he was told that video of the attack contradicted him.

Pavoni was released Thursday after posting $5,000 bail, the Porter County Sheriff’s Department said.

Neither Pavoni nor Crestwood police officials immediately responded to requests for comment about his arrest. It wasn’t immediately known if Pavoni had retained an attorney.