Judge charged, accused of punching, choking, biting wife

SHAKER HEIGHTS, Ohio — Cuyahoga County Judge of Common Pleas Lance Mason was arrested and charged with felonious assault, officials announced Monday.

It stemmed from an incident that happened around noon Saturday.

The prosecutor said the victim was Mason’s wife. She was taken to the hospital but has since been released.

Mason and his wife were said to be separated.

An argument allegedly started in a car then escalated. Mason is accused of punching, choking and biting his wife.

Part of the alleged assault happened in Shaker Heights. Mason was later arrested at his home in Cleveland.

Mason’s children were present during part of the alleged assault, the prosecutor said.

The prosecutor also said Mason’s wife had “serious facial injuries.”

Mason’s defense attorney said his 46-year-old client is a former state senator and has no violence in his past with no desire to hurt himself or anyone else.

Mason was arraigned via video late Monday morning. His bond was set at $65,000.  Prior to his release, Mason must also undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

He was ordered to have no contact with his wife or children.

The Cleveland Division of Police also removed guns from the judge’s house.

A preliminary hearing was set for Aug. 13.

Court administrator Gregory Popovich released the following statement:  “The Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court is aware of the allegations against Judge Lance T. Mason.  We cannot comment further at this time.

Judge Mason’s criminal and civil cases will continue as scheduled.  All parties involved should be prepared to move forward as planned.”