Court Documents Show James Brinker Had History of Domestic Violence

MITCHELL, S.D.- A Mitchell man charged with his wife’s death made his first court appearance in Davison County this Friday morning. 39-year-old James Brinker is charged with manslaughter after police say the woman suffocated.

According to the Mitchell Police Department, it all happened at a home on the 900 block of east 3rd street on Tuesday night. The investigation is ongoing, but what we do know from the affidavit filed in Davison County is that around 7 p.m. on Tuesday, police responded to a report of an unresponsive woman. When they got to the home, they found 36-year-old Marie Brinker dead.

According to court documents, Marie’s husband 39-year-old James Brinker put her on a mattress and wrapped her up in a blanket. He placed a sock in her mouth, then tied a belt around her mouth to the back of her head to prevent the sock from coming out. In the affidavit, it details that James then fell asleep. When he woke up, he saw Marie quote “did not look good.” He then cut off the belt because it was too tight to untie, he checked for a pulse, but was not able to find one.

He then left the home and picked up their three children. James Brinker had two of their sons go inside and call 911. He told the children he had a protection order so he did not want to be at the home. James told police the incident took place around noon.

Police say James had been living at the home despite the protection order Marie filed on August 21st. In the document she said quote “I’m scared, he may kill me or burn down the house.” Marie also stated in the protection order that James had threatened this multiple times. His criminal history consists of four arrests for domestic simple assault, one arrest for aggravated domestic assault, one false imprisonment arrest, one violation of a bond condition of a no contact order and one additional no contact violation as well as miscellaneous drug violations.

Brinker is charged with first-degree manslaughter, violation of a protection order constituting an assault, and simple assault. His bond is set at $750,000 cash only, his next court appearance is November 2nd.

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