Winston-Salem, NC -- A Winston-Salem police officer who was arrested and charged a second time with assaulting his girlfriend in on administrative leave while the case plays out in court.
Rodolfo Zermeno, 34, of Winston-Salem is accused of pushing and threatening to kill his girlfriend.
He had been arrested on a charge of assaulting the woman earlier, though that charge was dismissed in November.
Zermeno was arrested again on Jan. 5 on a charge of assault on a female and communicating threats. He was not armed when he was arrested.
He's been with the Winston-Salem Police Department for three years. Zermeno is still on the payroll as of Jan. 23, but is on administrative leave. That means he doesn't have access to his service weapon and cannot act as a police officer.
Zermeno's girlfriend obtained a restraining order against him shortly after his arrest. In court documents, she describes living in fear. In Zermeno's Jan. 5 arrest warrant, she claims he told her "I will kill you if you call the police again and I loose [sic] my job and go to jail."
An attorney representing the officer told WFMY News 2 the court documents don't tell the full story. She says a more complete picture will be available when she files a response in the next couple weeks. That will make clear why the previous case was dismissed, she said, and why Zermeno will be pleading "not guilty" this time.
The Associated Press/WFMY News 2