Joseph Newell

FLORIDA MAN thinks pregnant woman has coronavirus, viciously attacks & strangles her: Police

A pregnant Florida woman is recovering after a brutal attack by a man who thought she had coronavirus, police say.

NBC 2 reports authorities arrested 24-year-old Joseph Newell for allegedly attacking the victim on Monday night at a Cape Coral apartment complex. According to police, an officer heard a panicked scream. As the officer walked to the apartment complex, he witnessed Newell straddling a woman, with his hands wrapped around her neck.

Authorities eventually subdued Newell with a  “pain compliance” medication, the outlet reports.

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Responding officers said Newell appeared intoxicated and kept talking about COVID-19. When the officers questioned the witness, she said the suspect thought she had coronavirus and attacked her. She said she was six months pregnant.

After placing Newell in handcuffs, the man started banging his head into the concrete, according to the police report.


Newell is behind bars at the Lee County Jail on an aggravated battery charge. He is currently being held on a $15,000 bond.

Check back for updates.

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[Feature Photo: Joseph Newell/Lee County Jail]