A man who was driving to bail his mother out of jail ended up in jail himself after he punched and kicked his girlfriend.

Joshua Walls, 26, of Milwaukee, was charged by the Racine County District Attorney’s Office with three felony counts of second degree recklessly endangering safety and a misdemeanor battery charge. If convicted of all charges, Walls faces up to 30 years nine months in prison and/or fines up to $85,000.

According to a criminal complaint, officers with the Village of Mount Pleasant Police Department saw Walls’ car in the ditch on the north side of Highway C. The officer saw Walls “man-handling” a woman who was sitting in the driver’s side of the car with a “look of terror on her face.”

The officer got out of his car and detained Walls, then put him into the back of his squad car.

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During the investigation, the officer learned that two children were in the car, a 19-month-old and 4-year-old child.

The woman told police that they were driving to the Racine County Jail to post bond for Walls’ mother. He had the heat on low and the window down, which made the car cold. The woman was concerned about keeping the children warm. While Walls was in the jail he left the car running so she slid into the seat and turned up the heat for the children.

When Walls returned, he was upset and started yelling and kicking the car. The car belongs to the woman’s mother. So she locked the doors and told her boys not to open the door for Walls. Eventually, one of the children unlocked the door. Walls grabbed the woman by the back of the neck and pulled her out of the car. He then punched her in the head several times until someone came to help her.

The woman had swollen eyes and a scrape on her knee and back.

When Walls and the woman got back into the car, he drove so fast he started to lose control of the car. Walls hit the brakes so hard her son’s head “snapped forward” and the car went into the ditch, according to the criminal complaint.

Racine County Court Commissioner Alice Rudebusch set a cash bond at $1,000 and a preliminary hearing for 8:30 a.m. Jan. 24.

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.