Punching driver accused

A 23-year-old man is accused of punching his ex-girlfriend in the throat while she was driving on North George Street, causing her to swerve their vehicle into oncoming traffic.

Police said Brandon K. Gallardo, of 311 W. Embargo St., was riding with his ex-girlfriend while they were arguing in the 400 block of N. George St. at about 4 p.m. Wednesday. The couple’s two daughters, age 1 and 3, were strapped into the back seat.

Police said Gallardo punched his 22-year-old ex-girlfriend in the throat during the argument, causing her to choke and gag. The vehicle swerved into oncoming traffic after the woman was hit, but no one was hit. She managed to park at the intersection of George and West Embargo streets before getting out of the vehicle. The woman tried to call 9-1-1 on her cell phone, but police said Gallardo snatched the phone away and fled the scene on foot. A passerby stopped when they saw the woman on the side of the road and offered her a phone to call for help.

Gallardo is charged with second-degree harassment, fourth-degree mischief, petty larceny and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, police said. He was arraigned in City Court, and was sent to county jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail or bond. Gallardo is scheduled to reappear in court on June 6.