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Purdue University assistant professor accused of beating his wife in front of 10-year-old son

A Purdue University assistant professor who specializes in “positive emotions” and “parental involvement” is accused of beating his wife in front of his 10-year-old son while his son was locked in a dog cage.

John Froiland has a Ph.D. in school psychology and is on paid administrative leave. The Purdue Exponent reports that Purdue spokesperson Tim Doty did not specify how long Froiland would be on administrative leave, but police records show he is banned from campus for one year.

Police in West Lafayette say Froiland confronted his wife at about 4:30 pm last Wednesday shortly after she returned home from a shopping trip because he was angry that he did not know where she had been all day.

Police say he held her against a wall and put his son in a dog crate. They say Froiland broke off a leg from a wooden rocking chair and began hitting the woman. She was left with welts and bruises, investigators say.

Froiland’s wife was able to get out of the house with the boy after getting him out of the cage. Froiland took her cell phone so she couldn’t call the police, but officers say she was able to meet with them later and tell them what happened.

Froiland has been charged with domestic battery, criminal confinement, neglect of a dependent, intimidation, and interference with the reporting of a crime. He was booked into the Tippecanoe County Jail Wednesday night and was released on a bond of $500. His initial court date is set for January 3.

Froiland’s faculty profile lists him as a clinical assistant professor in educational psychology. He teaches a course called Learning and Motivation.

The Exponent says when they heard the news about Froiland, they felt, “irritated,” “angry,” and “disgusted.

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