A Manassas man was arrested Friday and charged in a series of incidents that included choking a woman, stealing a car and temporarily eluding deputies, police said.

Stafford County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Amanda Vicinanzo said Deputy Evan Houde went to a home on Sydney Lane in North Stafford shortly after 2 a.m. in response to a reported assault.

A woman reported that she had been watching a movie with the suspect, whom she had just met that night. When she returned to the room after leaving for a short time, she told the deputy the man grabbed her by the throat and began choking her.

She eventually broke free from the man and he then left the residence. Deputies surrounded the area, and Sgt. Lucas Burgess and Deputy Daniel Reed spotted the suspect hiding behind a vehicle.

They attempted to detain him, but the man broke free and ran. The deputies lost sight of him after he jumped a fence.

At 9:13 a.m. that same morning, Deputy Davin Runnerstrom went to the Wawa at 105 Garrisonville Road regarding a vehicle larceny.

A man left his vehicle parked at the gas pumps and went into the store. When he returned to the pumps, the vehicle was gone.

Surveillance camera footage showed the man was the same man suspected of assaulting the woman earlier in the morning, Vicinanzo said. He was identified as 27-year-old Robert Allen Hughes Jr.

Hughes was taken into custody later that day in Prince William County, where the stolen vehicle was also recovered.

Hughes was charged in Stafford with multiple offenses, including abduction, strangulation, grand larceny, assault and battery, obstruction of justice and resisting arrest. He was placed in the Rappahannock Regional Jail under no bond.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Nov. 21 in Stafford General District Court.

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Keith Epps: 540/374-5404


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