Saranac Lake man charged with attempted assault

SARANAC LAKE – A local man was arrested on assault-related charges this weekend for allegedly throwing another person down a flight of stairs.

Shaun M. Smith, 33, of Saranac Lake, was charged with second-degree attempted assault, a class E felony, and criminal obstruction of breathing, a class A misdemeanor.

Police Chief Bruce Nason said the charges stem from an investigation into an incident that allegedly occurred in a Broadway apartment building around 4:15 a.m. Saturday.

Smith allegedly threw a male victim down a flight of stairs, kicked him while he was on the ground and slammed a half-open door against his head several times. The alleged victim suffered a head injury and was transported to Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake for medical treatment by the Saranac Lake Volunteer Rescue Squad, Nason said.

Smith is also accused of grabbing another person by the throat and pushing that person away from him.

He was arrested, arraigned in village court and released after posting $1,500 cash bail.

Asked why Smith was charged with “attempted” assault instead of assault, Nason said that’s because police didn’t know the extent of the alleged victim’s injuries at the time of Smith’s arrest.

“With assault, you have to determine the severity of the injury,” Nason said. “At this time that’s what fits. We’ll wait for medical records to determine if the charges need to be upgraded.”