ELMIRA, N.Y. -- An Elmira man has been accused of intentionally breaking a natural gas line during a fight with his girlfriend.
Police say Giovanni Jefferson, 30, broke and disconnected a section of pipe in the basement area of their home in Heritage Park early Sunday morning.
According to investigators, Jefferson prevented the victim from calling 911 until she was able to get free. They say three children, two one-year-olds and one six-year-old, were upstairs in the residence as it filled with gas.
Jefferson allegedly ran out the back, leaving the children upstairs as firefighters evacuated the building.
Officers were able to get the children out safely despite the fumes and utility and fire crews were able to ventilate the area.
Jefferson has been charged with reckless endangerment, harassment, criminal mischief and endangering the welfare of a child.