NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – In a strange domestic violence case, waterboarding is one of the accusations according to the prosecutor.

However, the Southern California man who pleaded not guilty after being accused of waterboarding his wife earlier this year could face life in prison if convicted on all charges.

Richard David Schlosser, 36, of Newport Beach, was hit with a slew of charges in January, including torture, and criminal threats, after reportedly attacking his 65-year-old wife, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Newport Beach officers responded to Schlosser’s apartment in the 2700 block of Newport Boulevard at 10:17 a.m. Jan. 6 after someone called police to ask them to check on a woman at the home, said Newport Beach police spokeswoman Jennifer Manzella.

When officers arrived, they “identified a reason to believe a crime had occurred and entered the home to investigate,” Manzella said.

Schlosser “kept her captive in the apartment for hours,” Senior Deputy District Attorney Mark Geller told Southern California’s City News Service. “He actually waterboarded her.”

Schlosser was also hit with sentencing enhancement allegations of committing a crime while on bail and causing great bodily injury in a domestic violence case.


Richard David Schlosser, 36, is accused of waterboarding his 65-year-old wife. (Orange County District Attorney’s Office)

Geller said the 36-year-old held his wife inside their home in January while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, City News Service reported.

After Schlosser reportedly “sobered up,” the woman, who has not been publicly identified, was able to contact a friend, who called police. She was reportedly hospitalized to be treated for her injuries.

In a restraining order request, that was later dismissed due to the her failure to appear in court, the woman claimed Schlosser attacked her for six hours from Jan. 5 until Jan. 6, the Times reported. She alleged he “punched her — leaving her with a black eye — kicked her, hit her with a candelabra and cut her with scissors,” according to the news agency.

Court documents reportedly state that Schlosser allegedly choked the woman and shoved a towel down her throat.

Schlosser, who’s scheduled to appear in court in August for a pretrial hearing, has reportedly pleaded not guilty to one count each of torture, corporal injury on a spouse, false imprisonment and criminal threats.

At the time of the alleged attack, Schlosser was out on bail for a domestic violence case out of neighboring Riverside County that involved a woman in her 20s, Geller said.

Waterboarding is a form of torture in which water is poured over a cloth covering the face and breathing passages of an immobilized captive, causing the individual to experience the sensation of drowning.


Example of waterboarding. (Karl Gunnarsson/Flicker)

The precise method allegedly used by the defendant was undisclosed.

Schlosser would face a minimum of seven years to life in prison if convicted after the Jan. 6 arrest.

He is being held in Orange County Jail in Santa Ana with bail set at $2 million, according to jail records.