LOWELL, Mass. — Prosecutors have dropped criminal charges against a Massachusetts fire chief who had been accused of choking and assaulting his wife because she asserted her marital privilege not to testify against him.

The Lowell Sun reports that Ipswich Chief Gregory Gagnon’s trial was scheduled to start Monday, but instead prosecutors filed notification with the court that charges were being dropped because of insufficient evidence.

Gagnon, who spent 18 years as a Dracut firefighter before being named chief in 2014, has been on leave since the charges were filed in September. He underwent treatment and counseling during that time.

Ipswich’s town manager says Gagnon remains on leave, and has agreed to part ways with the town.

His lawyer says Gagnon is pleased the case is closed and is anxious to move forward.

Information from: The (Lowell, Mass.) Sun, http://www.lowellsun.com

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