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Fairmont Man Facing Assault Charges After Xmas Eve Melee

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FAIRMONT -

A Fairmont man was booked in to jail on Christmas Eve after a fight seriously injured the ex-husband of his wife.

Fairmont police say Thomas Stedman, 41, used a fire extinguisher to pummel his wife's ex-husband.  According to the criminal complaint, Stedman and his wife were bringing her children to her ex-husband's home on Christmas Eve.  Words were exchanged before Stedman allegedly poured a beer on his wife.

Several people were in the melee.  However, authorities say after the fight subsided, Stedman took a fire extinguisher and hit his victim several times.

Authorities say they were called to the scene around 10:45pm.  Officers saw a fire extinguisher outside and could hear yelling inside the home.  The complaint goes on to say that the victim was taken to the hospital and needed ten staples to close two wounds on his head.

Stedman told investigators he used the fire extinguisher as a weapon for self-defense and that he "felt for his life."

Stedman is facing a charge of 2nd Degree Assault.  That has a maximum penalty of 7 years in prison and a $14,000 fine.