NEWTON, Iowa — We’re learning more about a Newton police officer who was suspended after he was charged with domestic abuse.
Officer Dustin Hamell, according to court documents, was arrested July 29 at his home on highway S-74 South in Newton after his fiance called police complaining that Hamell “Slammed a door on her arm while she was trying to get into the room of their child.” He is also accused of “Pushing the victim twice, once into the hallway and another time in the bedroom against a dresser.”
He’s charged with domestic abuse assault.
We’ve also learned that Hamell is a war hero. According to Air Force Material Command, back in 2011, Hamell, who was a Senior Airman, was injured in Afghanistan when a suicide bomber detonated a 750 pound bomb near him. Hamell, according to the Air Force, dug himself out of the rubble, then, using his bare hands dug two children out of the rubble, dodging enemy fire to get them to a medic. He was awarded a Purple Heart and an Army Commendation Medal with Valor.
No one answered the door at his home, but one neighbor, who asked not to be identified says regardless of whether he is a war hero or a police officer, if the charges against him are true he should be punished. “I’m really against anything like that,” the neighbor told Channel 13. “I’ve had abuse in the family, not me, but some of the kids have had and there’s no excuse for that.”
Hamell has been with the Newton Police Department for three years. He was scheduled to marry the alleged victim next month.
An order of protection has been issued to keep the two apart. No one from the Newton Police Department responded to our request for a comment.