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U of Minnesota police officer charged with assaulting woman

ST. PAUL - A University of Minnesota police officer was charged with assault Thursday after allegedly putting his hands on a woman during an altercation during a traffic incident last summer in St. Paul.

Phillip Jack Lombardi, 49, was charged in Ramsey County District Court with two counts of fifth-degree assault and one count of disorderly conduct for the July 8 incident, according to the criminal complaint filed against him.

All three charges are misdemeanors.

A woman was walking in a crosswalk near Smith Avenue and Chestnut Street in St. Paul when a car suddenly turned the corner and nearly struck her, the complaint said.

Frustrated, she told officers she kicked the vehicle, leading to a verbal exchange between her and the driver, Lombardi. She said Lombardi then drove a short distance ahead, got out his car, came toward her and “extended one arm toward her neck and grabbed her,” the complaint said.

Lombardi reportedly ran off after a passer-by started yelling at him.

Lombardi has no known criminal record in Minnesota.

The case was investigated by a sergeant with the Dakota County sheriff’s office because the woman is an employee of the city of St. Paul.