Providence police: Former council candidate charged with assaulting wife

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A former candidate for Providence City Council was arrested early Thursday morning after police say he attacked and threatened his wife.

Hamlet Lopez, 28, pleaded not guilty in 6th District Court to simple assault charges.

Police say they responded to the woman’s Santiago Street home shortly after 2:00 a.m. Thursday after her daughter called 911. The daughter told police she heard Lopez say “I’m going to kill you.”

According to an incident report obtained by WPRI.com, the daughter said Lopez also told his wife, “If you get another restraining order, it’s only a piece of paper. It can’t stop me from doing what has to be done because I’m a real man.”

The altercation started after Lopez found his wife talking to someone on WhatsApp, a mobile messaging application. Police say he also ripped the woman’s shirt.

Reached Thursday, Lopez called the incident “unfortunate,” but said he plans to hire a lawyer and fight the charge.

“The truth shall set you free,” Lopez said.

Lopez, a Democrat, nearly defeated incumbent Councilman Wilbur Jennings, Ward-8, in a primary last year. After counting mail ballots, Lopez lost by 57 votes. He later volunteered for Buddy Cianci’s unsuccessful campaign for mayor.

Dan McGowan ( dmcgowan@wpri.com ) covers politics, education and the city of Providence for WPRI.com. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter: @danmcgowan

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