A former Cleveland judge was taken into custody after his sister called 911 and claimed he fatally stabbed his estranged wife just four years after he beat her so badly in front of their young children that she required facial reconstruction surgery, police said.
Shaker Heights Police confirmed in an incident report that former Cuyahoga County Judge Lance Mason was arrested after his estranged wife, Aisha Fraser, was found dead in her Shaker Heights, Ohio home last Saturday morning.
According to audio of the 911 call received by WKYC 3, police received an emergency call from Mason’s sister telling dispatchers that she found Fraser stabbed to death in the backyard of her former sister-in-law’s home. Mason’s sister told dispatchers the couple’s young daughters were in the house at the time.
“My brother is attacking his ex-wife,” Mason’s sister told 911. “He said he stabbed her … and she’s dead.”
According to police, as officers made their way to the crime scene, Mason attempted to flee, crashing his SUV into a police car and injuring patrol officer Adam Flynt. According to Cleveland.com, police said Mason then attempted to escape on foot after before police caught him.
Flynt and Mason are both currently in the hospital being treated for their injuries, although the Shaker Heights police said on Facebook that Flynt is “expected to be released soon to recover at home.”
Police have charged Mason with felonious assault for the crash. He has not yet been charged in connection to Fraser’s death.
“Today’s charge is the first of this investigation, and was brought in order to meet certain legal time constraints,” Shaker Heights police department said in a statement, per WOSU. “Additional criminal charges will be brought against Lance Mason relating to the death of Aisha Fraser.”
Mason was sentenced to 24 months in prison for brutally beating Fraser in August 2014. According to police, Mason repeatedly punched Fraser in the face, bit and choked her as they were sitting in a car while their two young children were in the backseat.
Following the attack, police arrested Mason in his home where they found multiple weapons, including nearly 2,300 live rounds of various calibers, a Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun, a semi-automatic rifle still in the box and four canisters of smoke grenades, according to Cleveland.com.
Mason was charged with felonious assault, kidnapping, endangering children and domestic violence.
He was released from prison after reportedly serving nine months of a two-year sentence. Following his early release from prison, Mason was hired by the Cleveland mayor’s office in August 2017 as a minority business development administrator. He was fired following this weekend’s arrest. In December 2017 the Ohio Supreme Court suspended his law license indefinitely.
Mason previously served as a state representative from 2002 to 2006, before being elected to the Ohio Senate from 2007 to 2008 and serving as an assistant minority whip.
Fraser worked as a 6th grade teacher at Woodbury Elementary School in Shaker Heights. The Shaker Heights Teacher Association set up a GoFundMe to support her two daughters.
“We are in deep mourning,” SHTA said in a Facebook post. “Aisha exemplified the best of Shaker Heights Teachers; smart, amazingly caring of her students and her colleagues, active in her profession and in Our Association. She is loved by many.”