Pa. doctor accused of burning wife with iron pleads guilty to disorderly conduct
SCRANTON — A doctor accused of deliberately burning his wife with a hot iron last year pleaded guilty Tuesday in Lackawanna County Court to two counts of disorderly conduct.
Dr. Bhargav Chowdary Paleti, 31, of Dunmore, was immediately sentenced by President Judge Michael J. Barrasse to one to two months in the county prison, plus two years of probation.
Paleti, who was affiliated with Geisinger at the time, was arrested by Dunmore police on aggravated assault and other charges in March 2017 after his wife told officers he twice burned her with an iron.
The second assault left Jaahnari Vajje, who married Paleti in India in 2016, with severe burns on her right forearm, police said.
Under questioning by Barrasse, Paleti said he understood the rights he was giving up by pleading guilty and indicated he had discussed with his attorney, Jason Mattioli, how it could affect his immigration status.
Before sentencing, Mattioli said Paleti had no prior arrests or any previous contact with the criminal justice system.
Mattioli told Barrasse that Paleti, who lost his job last spring, has made arrangements to move to Montreal, Canada, and must leave the United States by Oct. 9 to avoid potential arrest by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
At the time of her husband’s arrest, Vajje told Dunmore police Paleti had been unhappy with their arranged marriage from the outset and frequently subjected her to beatings and other physical abuse, according to court documents.