Villager wants to go back home after brawl with husband over pickleball

Lan Augustus

A Villager arrested last week after a brawl with her husband over pickleball has entered a plea in the case and wants to go back home.

Lan Nguyen Augustus, 61, of the Village of Charlotte, on Monday entered a plea of not guilty to a felony charge of battery on a person over the age of 65. She has retained attorney Jaimie Washo Spivey.

Augustus is also seeking permission to return to the home on Countryside Path that she owns with her husband. She is hoping to have a “no contact order” modified to a “no violent contact order.” A hearing on the motion in the case is set for April 22 in Sumter County Court.

Her husband had been lying in bed in the master bedroom on March 11 when the couple got into an argument over a pickleball clinic being offered in The Villages. The couple went into the living room, where “things began to escalate” and Augustus, who is 5 feet tall and weighs 110 pounds, punched him in the face, according to an arrest report from the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office. They moved to a bathroom, where his Vietnamese-born wife punched him again.

The husband went back to the master bedroom, took pictures of his face and went to bed. He slept for about an hour before Augustus came into the bedroom to gather some of her things. She went to another bedroom and locked the door. Her husband tried to talk to her through the door. Augustus, who has participated with her husband in a prominent dance competition in Florida’s Friendliest Hometown, opened the door and pushed him back. She punched him and went to an office in the Designer home the couple purchased in 2014 for $367,300. She picked up a cup and “fearing for his safety,” he took it away from her, the report said. He wrapped his arms around her and placed her on the floor until she “calmed down.” They discussed the possibility of her going to a hotel for the night.

While Augustus, who is an artist, was seated on the floor, she picked up a small metal easel and struck her husband’s foot two times. He went back to the master bedroom and called law enforcement.

When interviewed by a deputy, Augustus also said their argument started over pickleball. She said she left the bedroom and her husband followed her, trying to talk about the pickleball issue. She said she went into the garage to pick up a container so she could give herself a pedicure, but her husband blocked her re-entry into the home. She made her way into the home but when she went to get some water, he chest bumped her again. She finished her pedicure and went into the bedroom where her husband was sleeping.  She wanted to retrieve her cell phone and personal items so she could sleep in another bedroom. Her husband came to the door of that bedroom, which she opened. That’s when “another verbal altercation began at the threshold of the door that escalated into a physical altercation in the front hallway, where the victim chest bumped the defendant,” the deputy wrote in the report.

She remains free on $5,000 bond.