Man with long history of domestic violence is behind bars after his victim finally has enough.


David Reynolds

By SARA VANDEN BERGE


A man with a long history of domestic violence is behind bars after allegedly beating and choking a woman one day after Christmas.


David Reynolds, 36, has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and is being held at the Erath County Jail on a $100,000 bond.


He was arrested Saturday night, hours after allegedly beating the mother of his three children, choking her and threatening to kill her with a broken broomstick.


“This was a textbook case of domestic abuse; the victim had obvious injuries,” Lt. James Gresham told Beneath the Surface News. “She had been down this road before and the violence was getting worse.”


The woman’s co-workers contacted the Stephenville Police Department on Saturday night when the victim showed up to work with injuries to her neck.


Officers then went to the victim’s place of employment and she agreed to make a formal statement to investigators at the police station.


The victim, who is in her mid-30s, told police she had been abused by Reynolds for years.


“He had been arrested for beating her more than a dozen times in four different states,” Gresham said. “But on Saturday, she finally had enough.”


She told Gresham that Reynolds had isolated her from family and friends and had beaten and chocked her numerous times over the years.


She said the couple relocated to Stephenville from out of state in March and that she has no family living in the area.


Police secured a warrant for Reynolds' arrest and he was taken into custody at his residence.


Gresham said Reynolds was surprised when police came knocking.


“He had taken her phone away so she couldn’t communicate with anyone,” Gresham said. “As far as he knew, she was at work.”


When questioned by police, Reynolds reportedly blamed the victim for her injuries.


“He claimed she fabricated the injuries to get him into trouble,” Gresham said. “It’s a classic move by abusers.”

FINALLY READY TO TALK


It can take years for victims of domestic violence to finally gather the courage to leave their abusers.


Family dynamics, the fear of the unknown and limited resources can often keep a woman tethered to an abusive relationship.


“Statistics tell us that, on average, women leave their batterers seven times before making that final separation," Gresham said. “This was a special case because this particular woman was ready to get out."


There is now a protective order in place and it doesn’t appear that Reynolds is getting out of jail anytime soon.


HELP FOR VICTIMS


There is hope and help for others caught in the cycle of abuse.


Cross Timbers Family Services in Stephenville offers assistance to victims of violent crimes, including domestic violence.


The organization works in concert with local law enforcement to assist victims and help them get on their feet.


Gresham is now issuing a pointed message to others who find themselves in similar situations.


“We want every day to be a day for victims to escape domestic violence,” he said. “If today is your day, let us help you.”


CTFS has a hotline that victims can call for help: It’s 866-934-4357.