Former KISS Guitarist Charged In Wife’s Beating, Dead Dogs Found In Home

Former KISS Guitarist Charged In Wife’s Beating, Dead Dogs Found In Home

May 23, 2011

Former KISS Guitarist Charged In Wife's Beating, Dead Dogs Found In HomeA former KISS guitarist is accused of beating his wife so badly she had to be hospitalized this past weekend, and when officers went to the guitarist’s home to make an arrest they found four sealed containers with dead dogs inside, according to a sheriff’s incident report.

Mark Bell of The Daily News Journal reports that a booking officer at the Rutherford County Adult Detention Center confirmed Vinnie Vincent, whose real name is Vincent John Cusano, was charged with one count of aggravated assault on Saturday. Cusano was lead guitarist for the rock band KISS between 1982 and 1984 and replaced original band member Ace Frehley.

An incident report on file at the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office details the incident that led to that arrest.

Diane Cusano, Vincent Cusano’s wife, showed up at the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office Saturday covered in blood and reportedly intoxicated, according to the RCSO incident report. Authorities immediately called an ambulance to transport Cusano to Middle Tennessee Medical Center here in Murfreesboro.

Cusano explained she had been in an argument with her husband over a woman he had been talking to, the report reads.

During the argument Cusano said her husband told her to “get the (expletive) out of the house” and then got physically violent, smacking her in the face, grabbing her by the hair and throwing her on the ground, according to the report. She claims her husband then dragged her through a pile of glass from a broken plate that was on the floor before the argument started.

When deputies went to Vincent Cusano’s 101 Woodland Trail home in Smyrna to speak with him about the incident they were unable to make contact immediately, which resulted in the Rutherford County Felony Arrest Search Tactical (FAST) team being called to the home. FAST team members found Cusano and arrested him without incident.

Deputies who went to the house reported finding four sealed containers that had deceased dogs inside them. Rutherford County animal welfare officers were called to the house in response to that finding, according to police. An investigation is pending in that matter.

“PAWS spoke with Diane about the deceased animals and was advised that the animals were killed by one of their aggressive dogs,” the report reads.

A Woodland Trail neighbor of Cusano told investigators that he heard the Cusano’s arguing Saturday, according to the report. Paul Sachtjen told police he heard “a male voice” saying “get the (expletive) out of my house.”

When police later tried to interview Vincent Cusano about the incident, he would not make any statements, according to the report.

Booking records from the detention center show Cusano was booked into the jail at 11:33 p.m. Saturday. He was released at 11:27 a.m. Sunday after posting $10,000 bail and is scheduled to appear in court June 23.

The incident report detailed Diane Cusano’s injuries, which included small cuts on her forehead, a hematoma on her forehead, a swollen and bruised nose, bruised and swollen right eye, a bruise on her left clavicle, lacerations on her forearm, bruises on her right elbow, bruised and swollen right thumb, laceration to right foot, bruised inner right knee, bruises and what appeared to be puncture wounds to her right calf and left buttocks.

She has since been released from the hospital, according to an MTMC spokeswoman.

Courtesy of and