CUC employee allegedly strangles wife


Commonwealth Utilities Corp. employee Christopher Santos Bigley covers his face with documents as a Corrections officer escorts him after a bail hearing for domestic violence before Superior Court Associate Judge Kenneth L. Govendo Friday afternoon at the temporary Superior Court at the Marianas Business Plaza in Susupe. (Ferdie De La Torre)

An employee of the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. was arrested Thursday afternoon for allegedly strangling his pregnant wife for coming home late at night at their home in Achugao.

The wife told police that she prayed that she won’t die as Christopher Santos Bigley choked her, with his thumbs on her throat. He also allegedly had her in a headlock.

Bigley, 38, was taken Friday for bail hearing before Superior Court Associate Judge Kenneth L. Govendo on charges of strangulation, assault and battery, assault, and disturbing the peace. Govendo imposed a $5,000 cash bail and $20,000 in unsecured bond on Bigley, plus some conditions. Preliminary hearing will be this Friday at 10am. Chief public defender Douglas Hartig was appointed as counsel for the defendant. Assistant attorney general Samantha Vickery appeared for the government.

According to police detective Lupe Ann C. Lizama in her report, the victim walked in to Department of Public Safety’s front desk last Thursday noon to file a domestic violence complaint against Bigley.

Lizama said the wife alleges that the beating, which was done in front of their infant child, happened when she came home last Wednesday past 11pm. The victim said that Bigley woke up and questioned her whereabouts and why she was late. She told Bigley she was too tired and that if she could not sleep in their house she would just leave.

As she was leaving the door with her belongings, Bigley allegedly pulled the bag from her shoulder and pulled her, causing her to fall to the ground. Bigley then pulled her back into the house, choked her, and slammed her to the wall. He allegedly threatened to kill her. The wife said Bigley was so strong that, when he choked her, she could not breathe so she just prayed he would not kill her.

Later, she felt like throwing up, so she got up but he came from behind her and he put his arm around her neck in a headlock.

The wife said their baby was crying because he saw what happened. As she tried to calm the baby so it would go back to sleep, Bigley allegedly shouted at the child to shut up or he would hurt him too.

The wife said Bigley knows she’s two months pregnant and that it’s not the first time he hurt her.

Police arrested Bigley at CUC in Lower Base Thursday afternoon.

Bigley told police he did not do anything to his wife and that they were fine before going to sleep the night before.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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