Miami-Dade firefighter accused of choking girlfriend, holding her against will

Ali Ponder, 44, arrested Monday in Miramar


MIRAMAR, Fla. – A Miami-Dade firefighter is facing charges after he choked his girlfriend and held her against her will inside their Miramar home, police said.

The incident was reported Monday at the couple's home off Miramar Parkway and Tara Road.

According to an arrest report, Ali Ponder, 44, and his girlfriend, who live together, got into a verbal altercation Monday that escalated into a physical altercation.

The woman told police that Ponder choked her with both of his hands and wouldn't let her leave the bedroom.

She said he made her stay in the bedroom for about two hours and told her that if she left he would "smash her face in," police said.

Police said Ponder pushed his girlfriend onto the bed when she tried to leave.

According to the report, Ponder confessed to threatening the victim, but said that he didn't plan to follow through with the threat and never choked or pushed her. 

Police said no bruises or marks were found on the victim.

Ponder was arrested and taken to the Broward County Main Jail.

He faces charges of domestic battery by strangulation and false imprisonment.

Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials said Ponder has been placed on administrative duty pending formal charges.

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