Wednesday, September 16, 2015

My Story: The Rock Bottom

Date: 01/15/2009
Arrest Time: 21:45:00
Charge Literal: Assault BI

Status: Booked
Fingerprint Taken? Yes
Mug? Yes

Actor Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly caused bodily injury to another.

That is just some of the information from the incident report the night I was arrest. 

January 15, 2009 - the day that everything changed.

If you have not read the previous post about this day, then you will want to read it here:

I remember calling my mother from the Walgreen’s down the street and saying, “I’ve asked him to leave. I’ve told him to get out, but he is refusing. Shelby and I are going to buy some junk food (the helper of all stress) and drive around. Hopefully, when we get back he will be gone.”

I wish he was gone. I so wish he had just left. 

As we walked back through the door of my home I saw him laying there in his normal state of passed out on the sofa. I screamed, I yelled, I kicked the sofa. Get up and get out of my house! Get out of my life! Get out! 

Dana said {he} woke up aggressively. {He} jumped up and started yelling. Dana said her 7 year old daughter (no blood relation to {him}) was standing in the living room. {He} got into her daughter’s face and started to yell, “This is all your fault. Your mom killed your sibling just like she should have killed you!” 

Shelby had just come out of the bathroom into the hallway when he jumped up and started yelling. He grabbed her shoulders and screamed in her face. I snapped - no other to say it. 

The first thing I saw in my eyesight was a baseball bat leaned against the kitchen wall. My thought process at that moment - get him away from Shelby and get him out of my house.

Dana said she took the bat and swung it multiple times with only her right hand striking {him} multiple times in the right elbow/bicep/upper shoulder area. 

The instant I hit him he knew exactly what to do. 

Dana said {he} ran to the phone and called the police. 

When he hung up he said, “that is assault with a deadly weapon, that’s a felony!”

Fear! Pure. Fear. 

I grabbed Shelby and ran to my room, locking the door behind us. First I called my mother, “he’s called the police. I hit him with a bat and he’s called the police!” You can probably imagine my mother’s freak-out at that moment especially since she was still states away from me at the time. She was going to start making calls - calling my aunt who was in the area and our family lawyer. 

Then, I called my ex-husband because the last thing I wanted was for Shelby to go into the custody of the city of wherever - I didn’t know, I was freaked. 

When the police showed up - three cars with light and sirens - I was still locked in my room with Shelby. I do admit that after my phone calls I did have a moment where I debated on just running, but really…running from the scene of a crime - I’ve watched a bit of COPS in my day. 

Their questioning began in my kitchen. I stood there explaining what had happened - being 100% honest (as you read above) that I did indeed hit him with a bat, but also crying that I had NO IDEA that a bat was considered a deadly weapon. 

Want to know my “criminal” history before this day? 


Not even a single traffic ticket. 

I remember standing in my kitchen surrounded by cases of Girl Scout cookies. It was the start of cookie season and I was a Girls Scout Brownie troop leader. I worked hard to lead twelve little girls in the right direction - I was not a “criminal.” I spent the years prior to this working along side many people in law enforcement, the mayor of the city I had worked for, knew me by name and I attended parties with council members. How did I get to this moment where I was going to jail? I wasn’t a person who assaulted other people. 

But that night I made a mistake - I assaulted someone and did it with a “deadly weapon.”

This guy didn’t handle things well. In the incident report he is described as “a hostile victim.” There was a lot of back and forth. We were each questioned, there was serious debate from the officers as to wether I would be taken into custody. The officers at my house that evening were very familiar with this guy since he had been taken into custody just a few months before. They were outwardly not impressed by him at all. 

I think each one of those officers seriously felt for me, stating later to my family that they wished they didn’t have to do this. They knew who was at fault in this situation, but unfortunately the law is the law. And I broke the law. 

I placed Dana under arrest for Assault (Bodily Injury)(Family Violence). I handcuffed (double locked), searched and transported Dana to the jail. 

My ex-husband had already been to the house to get Shelby. We made very little eye contact as he walked through my living room. I had heard my aunt’s voice outside a few minutes earlier, but they would not allow her into the home. As I was escorted in handcuffs out of my house my aunt was allowed to hug me and in tears she said she loved me very much. She and my uncle were left in possession of my house and my car. That part of this story always makes me weep because it meant so much to me that they were there and that they were worried. During this horrible relationship I had gotten myself in, I pushed everyone away, my family and my friends. When you are dealing with an addict in your home it is very lonely - you don’t want anyone to know exactly what is happening, therefore you don’t keep friends and you don’t make new friends. With my parents living eight hours away and my grandmother being two years into her seven year battle with alzheimer’s, my aunt and uncle were the only family I could lean on. 

Dana was booked in for Assault (Bodily Injury) (Family Violence) and turned over to the jailers for processing. 

I had never worn handcuffs. I had never ridden in the back of a police car. I’d never had a mug shot. I’d never had to strip down to nothing and be searched. 

As I was being booked I kept thinking, soon they will say “this was a mistake, you can go.” This was all one big terrible nightmare. 

I called my mother from a phone hanging on the wall. She was in Chicago, but already contacted my lawyer who was working on bail (I’d have to be charged first) and she had already changed her flight to be in town the next day. I can’t believe this happening - that is what I repeated over and over again to her. She was strong, way stronger than I was at that moment and kept telling me that we would get through this. 

After hanging up the phone I was escorted to the last cell on the left at the end of a long hallway. The bars opened, I stepped in and then they closed behind me. 

Who was I? I had done everything in the course of six months that I said I would never do. I didn’t recognize myself anymore. (I am sure if I was able to locate my mugshot from that night you wouldn’t recognize me either) I was lost. 

The mess that was my life (that I created myself through my mistakes) was bigger than me. I had one option that night.  As I laid in that cement “shelf” that was my bed for the evening I had one option - ask Him for help. It was time to let go, to release control of this train wreck and ask Jesus for help. 

Okay Lord I’ve had enough - I hear you and I need your help. Please save me from this mess. 

And while your at  it, please keep the woman who is passed out in the shelf below me from beating me up. (she turned out to be pretty nice and was in for unpaid traffic tickets - not murder or anything)

Oh, and please help my bladder to not explode because I am definitely not using that silver toilet that provided zero privacy. 

Oh man was I ever scared. I prayed, but I knew that was going to be heading to the County Jail and if I knew one thing, I knew that County Jail isn’t good at all. I thought for sure I would spend even more time braless in orange scrubs. Not that fashion was at the top of my list of worries at that moment, but this, no record what so ever, girl was scared to death. 

All this kept me up all night along with the fear that I would roll off of the cement shelf I was lying on. It seriously was a shelf sunken into a cement wall about five feet in the air. I climbed up using two flat metal “stairs” that protruded from the wall. It would have been pretty painful if I accidentally rolled off. 

On January 16, 2009 I reviewed this case to prepare for presenting it to the DA’s office. The victim refused to make a statement for a family violence packet. The victim did allow the officers to take photos of reported injuries. I reviewed these photos and observed someone pointing at areas on a white male’s arm and back. However, I did not observe any injury. 

I reviewed the suspect’s history report and found no previous arrests. The suspect does not even show to have a traffic violation on her driver’s license. 

Due to all of the circumstance, the case was closed with a CID-no file. I notified the jail of the status change of this case and they immediately started to release the suspect. 

On 01/16/2009 at 08:03:18 I was released from jail. 

I was told by the jailer, “The DA has decided to not charge you. You can go home.” I changed clothes, was given my things, and escorted out of the building. It was 8 am on a cold January morning, I was wearing short sleeves and high heels (still wearing my clothes from work the day before), but I did not care and proceeded to walk to my house. I am pretty sure it was at least three miles, but that did not phase me one bit. Luckily, a few blocks into my journey a police car pulled up beside me and a nice officer said, “Hop in, I am taking you home.” As he left me in my driveway he said, “Stay safe, okay.” He knew, I knew, that I was not meant to spend the night in jail - this was not the plan for my life. 

There are events that will take you to your knees, but you won’t get up again until you embrace the grace given to you. I wish at that moment, on that day, that I would have fully accepted the grace I received. The rest of 2009 was spent medicating myself (with alcohol) to dilute the pain of what had taken place in my life the previous year. That night also hardened my heart which, as you know, I still trying to soften completely. 

For the next year I still lived in fear. This guy left my home, but did not leave my life. I would come home from work and noticed things had been moved, that he had gotten in somehow. I installed additional locks on my doors and windows. I kept my most valuable possessions in the trunk of my car so that they would be with me during the day and there were many nights when I made Shelby sleep with me, locked in my master bedroom. I had to file a harassment report against him at one point during the year. The day I was released from jail I found a needle and drop paraphernalia under the rug next the sofa where he was laying this was the first of what felt like hundreds of items I would find hidden through out my house. My neighbors helped me watch my house and many occasions a nice man across the street was there to run this guy off when he would show up (normally during the day while I was working). This would go on until he went back to jail in late August of 2009. 

It would take me a good year to get myself together and spend one weekend in February 2010 in prayer and submission to God. A weekend that would change my life - a weekend that God gave me the blessing that would come from His grace. But in all seriousness, it would take almost six years for me to fully understand grace, forgiveness and that I had been fully redeemed and restored. It would take me almost six years to say, “I am not my past. I am not my mistakes” and believe it with my whole heart. Even after six years, though, I still can’t tell this story without crying because I know I am forgiven and I am not my past, but my heart hurts still for the woman who lived through January 15, 2009. 

1 comment:

  1. You should not wait or delay for any kind of reason, and also, do not argue with the police as this will make your case more complicated. So it’s better to contact the lawyer for Assault Causes Bodily Injury Family Violence case and discuss the whole situation to handle the matter efficiently. They might provide some useful suggestions to defend your rights and to prove you innocent.


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