Struggling to breathe under water in her bathtub, Rowena Broedel thought she saw God, she told police.
Mark Broedel later confessed to duct-taping his wife's hands and mouth in a fury and dunking her in the bathtub of their Greenacres home until she passed out and nearly drowned, reports show.
Broedel, 37, was arrested Sunday on attempted murder charges, according to jail records.
Broedel will be charged with attempted first-degree murder, assistant state attorney Mary Ann Duggan said on Monday in court. Palm Beach County Judge Ted S. Booras ordered Broedel held in lieu of $300,000 bail and ordered he have no contact with his wife.
According to a Greenacres Public Safety Department report, Rowena Broedel, 36, told officers just before dawn on Sunday that she and her husband had gotten into a spat while shopping and he'd threatened to beat her when they got home. She said she'd refused to leave the store for 45 minutes but finally acquiesced.
When the couple got home, the wife told officers, Mark Broedel threw her on the bed and taped her hands behind her back. She said when she threatened to call police, he began punching her in the abdomen and face.
She said he started the water in the tub, then took her to it, forced her to her knees and pushed her head under water for 15 to 30 seconds at a time, repeatedly pulling her up for air and then plunging her back down.
Rowena Broedel told police she struggled and jerked and swallowed large amounts of water and "reported seeing the Lord and asking him for help," the report said.
She said she finally fell unconscious while under water.
The wife said she later regained consciousness. She said her husband had drained the tub and gone out to the bedroom. She said she lay on the bathroom floor for about an hour. She said the tape had grown loose from being wet and she was able to free herself.
She said she changed her clothes and went out to the bedroom. She said her husband was "very apologetic" and the two went out shopping for food and a movie. She said she stayed in the car to hide her bruised face.
When the couple returned home, Rowena Broedel said, they got into another argument and she fled the home and flagged a ride to the home of her mother, who took her to JFK Medical Center in Atlantis. Authorities there contacted police.
At first, the report said, Mark Broedel told officers his wife had grabbed a knife and threatened to kill herself while filling the tub and had then slipped. He later broke down and confessed, the report said.
It said Rowena Broedel had filed an abuse complaint on June 20, then dropped it, saying she'd fabricated the confrontation.
Palm Beach County Jail records show no previous arrests for Mark Broedel.