TRAVERSE CITY — A Fife Lake man faces assault by strangulation and interfering with electronic communications charges, both felonies, after pushing his girlfriend out of a moving car.

Grand Traverse County sheriff's deputies arrested Christopher Wayne Martin, 23, after an argument with his girlfriend in his car turned physical at about 10 p.m. Sept. 12.

Martin's girlfriend, 19, from Rapid City, asked him to stop his car on U.S. 31 near Sawyer Road in Blair Township so she could get out, but he refused, court documents state.

The woman told investigators she was on the phone with a friend and said she was going to call the police because Martin was "driving crazy" and wouldn't let her out of the car. Martin grabbed her cellphone and put it in his pocket.

He choked her with one hand and pushed her head toward a broken passenger door secured by a piece of rope when she tried to get her phone back, court documents state.

"As a result of a struggle the victim's head was hanging out the window and her feet were up above the dash," sheriff's Capt. Randy Fewless said.

Martin's girlfriend told deputies that she couldn't breathe and kicked Martin in the face so he would let her go.

She tried again to get her cellphone but Martin pushed her toward the door, "causing her to fall out of the moving motor vehicle," court documents state.

She complained of a minor abrasion on her hand but refused medical treatment, Fewless said.

Martin drove back to the Rapid City home where the couple had been staying at, and Kalkaska Village police officers pulled him over on U.S. 131 just outside the village.

Grand Traverse County sheriff's deputies arrested Martin, though he denied choking or pushing his girlfriend, Fewless said.

Martin's preliminary hearing is Sept. 29 at 11 a.m. in Grand Traverse County's 86th District Court.

Martin was convicted in April of assault and battery and in July 2013 of attempted aggravated domestic assault in 86th District Court.

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