Geoffrey Paschel’s criminal past has been a central theme of this season’s “90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days” but is the Tennessee resident divulging his entire criminal history to his Russian love interest?
Paschel confessed on the show to serving time in prison more than twenty years ago for dealing drugs, telling Varya Malina, the woman he met through an international dating site, that he was a different man now.
But that isn’t the only legal trouble the Knoxville resident’s had.
Paschel was also indicted by a grand jury late last year for aggravated kidnapping, domestic assault, interference with emergency call and vandalism after a girlfriend alleged that he had violently grabbed her by the neck and slammed her head into the wall, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
The reality star’s criminal past and the current allegations against him even prompted some TLC fans to start a Change.org petition that had gathered nearly 5,000 signatures to date calling for the network to remove him from the show.
“He has been accused of kidnapping, abuse, rape, child endangerment, dealing drugs, felony larceny, theft and battery,” the petition reads. “He is barred from ever entering Canada.”
Paschel has proclaimed his innocence and to date remains a part of the show and even recently proposed to Malina—an offer she turned down because she said she wasn’t sure she could trust him.
“I love him but I am not sure if I could trust him in everything,” she said on the show. “I am not ready.”
Malina said his drug conviction and an incident where he yelled at her friends on a visit to Russia had given her pause.
“These are big issues in the future,” she said.
Oxygen.com reached out to Paschel through social media to address the allegations but has not received a response.
Serving Time Behind Bars
Paschel was arrested in the late 1990s in Blount County, Tennessee for possession of a schedule VI controlled substance, possession of a schedule I controlled substance and possession of a schedule II controlled substance with intent to resell, according to court records obtained by In Touch Weekly.
He pleaded guilty to the charges against him and was sentenced to 11 months and 29 days in jail, the outlet reported.
Marian O’Briant, public information officer for the Blount County Sheriff’s Office declined to provide details about the arrest other than to tell Oxygen.com that he had been in their county’s jail “a few times” between 1997 and 2000.
She said there was no record of him being in jail in the county after 2000.
Paschel initially kept his time in prison a secret from Malina, but decided he needed to come clean while he was in Russia visiting his girlfriend’s hometown.
“I told Varya’s mother that she can trust me, but I’ve been keeping a major secret from Varya all this time,” he said in an episode first airing on April 12.
A nervous Paschel finally divulged his past while the pair were sitting outside the school where Varya had gone as a child.
“Although I am a different person now, when I was younger, I did go to prison for dealing drugs,” he said.
Paschel said it was a period in his life that he doesn’t like to talk about and was not “proud” of his choices back then but had been “really poor” growing up.
Malina wasn’t pleased about the revelation and said she couldn’t believe he hadn’t told her sooner.
“Have you ever thought about families you have hurt by your actions?” she said. “My cousin died from that stuff. He was only 28 years old. The mother, she was inconsolable. Because she lost her son.”
She went on to say she “can’t believe you could help someone die.”
Paschel tried to apologize for his actions telling her, “I get it and it affects me too. I don’t even like thinking about it, I don’t like thinking about people that I could have hurt. I made a poor decision.”
But Malina told him she needs to “pause” their relationship while she took in the new information.
The couple later decide to work through it, but Malina still cited his criminal past as one reason she turned down the proposal.
Accusations Of Abuse
But what hasn’t been addressed on the show—at least to date—is Paschel’s domestic violence arrest in 2019.
Paschel’s girlfriend at the time called 911 on June 9, 2019 to report that she'd allegedly been attacked by Paschel.
The woman told authorities that Paschel was “intoxicated” and “grabbed her by the neck and slammed her head against a wall several times,” according to an affidavit of complaint obtained by Oxygen.com.
In a later petition filed to seek an order of protection, she said Paschel “repeatedly bashed/slammed” her head into the hardwood floor, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.
“He dragged me through the house by my hair and continued throwing my body into walls and furniture. I know this because of blood on my walls, furniture, etc.” the petition said.
She also told authorities Paschel disabled her phone so she couldn’t call for help and was forced to flee to a neighbor’s home.
A paramedic who arrived at the scene determined that the woman exhibited common signs of a concussion and she was taken to a local hospital by her neighbor for further medical evaluation, according to the affidavit.
Officers at the scene also noted Paschel had “scratch marks on his stomach and chest, which appeared to be self-inflicted.”
Paschel appeared at an arraignment on the charges in January and told The Knoxville News Sentinel that he was not guilty. He believed his ex-girlfriend had pursued the charges because of a pending child custody case in Blount County he had involving another woman.
“It’s all about child custody,” he said at the time.
Paschel also addressed the allegations against him in a recent Instagram post after his hearing date had been postponed.
"Unfortunately, it has once again been delayed due to the pandemic," he wrote. "I have been very eager to go and reveal the truth surrounding the evidence in question. I have continually requested the earliest possible dates every time so that I expeditiously clear my name. I have been forced to hide under a rock and told that the 'hate will just go away' if I ignored it. That is not me, and I can't take constant accusations from people, whilst I lie in silence, any longer."
Paschel went on to say that he is "100% categorically innocent" of the claims against him and again asserted his belief that the allegations were made in an attempt to sabotage his custody battle.
"These claims are the main reason I’ve been lambasted with such vitriol. I can assure you, if any of these fables were true, I would bow out and accept responsibility. Not all is as it seems," he wrote. "I have been held back from defending myself, but the time has come that I stand up to the incredulous and contrived conditions that keep compounding due to the viral spread of sensationalized opinions and lazy, one sided, internet reporting—meant only for clickbait. There are unscrupulous intentions behind this endeavor to defame me and it is due to the custody situations I am currently in. Consequently, the only way for the actual truth to be known, is for me to speak out."
Paschel said he planning his own "tell-all" to share his side of the story.
Oxygen.com reached out to TLC for a comment about the recent allegations and the decision to keep Paschel the show, but hasn't received a reply as of press time.
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