West Haven Man Charged in Girlfriend’s Death


James Ratchford now faces manslaughter charges in the death of his girlfriend, Roxanne Young, 47.

Young died as a result of a blow to the spleen after going into the hospital with chest pains, the medical examiner said.

A judge has ordered Ratchford, 52, held on $750,000 bail based on the nature of the charges and violation of a protective order.

That protective order followed an arrest in January, but families said Ratchford and Young ignored it, and continued living together.

Prior to the January arrest, Ratchford had little trouble with the law.

Tensions were high inside and outside the courthouse as several family members and friends were on hand in support of both the victim and the suspect.

The victim's relatives say she had a serious drinking problem and they had discouraged her from staying with Ratchford. His relatives say he too had a drinking problem, their relationship was volatile and they had encouraged him to stay away from her.

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