According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, in the United States, 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner. That’s more than 10 million men and women over the course of a single year. The presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation increases the risk of homicide by 500%.
It can be hard for an abused partner to leave this kind of situation, even if they may want to. Oftentimes, things like fear, the belief that abuse is normal, low self-esteem, and/or a lack of resources contribute to the abused staying and perpetuating the cycle.
Thankfully, this is not one of those cases.
Last month, a woman made headlines when she made a valiant escape from an abusive boyfriend who had been holding her hostage for days.
According to the Daytona Beach News-Journal (DBNJ), the assault began on May 23. in the couple’s home after Jeremy Floyd, 39, the woman’s boyfriend, threatened to have her sexually assaulted.
“She initially tried to escape Floyd,” the article explained, “by jumping out a bedroom window and running down the street. But he chased her down and dragged her back into the house.”
Floyd then grabbed a handgun, threatening to kill the woman. The two struggled with the gun before it went off, but Floyd kept control. Afterward, the woman fell asleep for 22 hours as a result of head trauma inflicted by the man.
On Friday morning, when the woman woke up, she convinced Floyd that her dog was sick and needed to go to the vet.
The man (who apparently cares more about animals than people) agreed that the woman could bring the dog— but he would be accompanying her. “While they drove to the veterinarian, the woman said Floyd pointed the loaded handgun at her and threatened to kill her and her family,” DBNJ reported.
When they arrived at the DeLand Animal Hospital, the woman asked to use the washroom. On the way in, she managed to slip a note into an employee’s hand. It urged them to call the police.
“Call the cops. My boyfriend is threatening me. He has a gun. Please don’t let him know.”
The employee acted fast, alerting police who ultimately arrested Floyd with several charges, including domestic violence and aggravated assault with a firearm.
After the event, Mike Chitwood, the County Sheriff, praised the woman on Twitter, writing:
“Thank God for the courage of this woman, the quick action of staff ad DeLand Animal Hospital and the work of our deputies and DeLand.”
Thank God for the courage of this woman, the quick action of staff at DeLand Animal Hospital and the work of our deputies and DeLand PD! https://t.co/Cc6gbDZCKl
— Mike Chitwood (@SheriffChitwood) May 26, 2018
Part of Floyd’s pre-trial release conditions prohibited him from contacting the victim. However, the Orlando Sentinel reports Floyd has contacted the victim nearly 50 times since his arrest. Police later confirmed at least sixteen calls were made.
Like most abusers, Floyd was full of kind words and promises for his victim, leaving the following message on her voicemail after his arrest:
“I understand you’re upset with me. I’m sorry. I know you’re upset with me and I apologize about what I did to you. I’ll make it up to you. I apologize, and I love you.”
As of May 31, the Orlando Sentinel reports Floyd is being held without bond on his pre-trial condition violation.
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