UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Utica Police have charged a man after they say he tried to strangle his girlfriend, then prevent her and her children from leaving the scene. According to authorities, the woman was sleeping in the early morning hours of Wednesday when her boyfriend, Alonzo Thomas, 33, of Utica began yelling at her, grabbing her by the throat and started to strangle her. She told police that she was able to break free but that Thomas continued to follow her and punched her in the head. Police say she attempted to flee the home with her six year old and seven year old children but that Thomas blocked the door. Eventually able to flee, she then called police. During the incident, police said Thomas is alleged to have taken the woman's cell phone and broke it. Thomas has been charged with criminal obstruction of breathing, criminal mischief, endangering the welfare of a child and harassment.