A woman alleged to have been held against her will, beaten, choked and threatened with a knife by her boyfriend has been successful in having a no contact order lifted so she and her attacker could reunite.
When 24-year-old Justin Rogers of Mountain Home -- identified as the woman's boyfriend -- was arrested for the alleged attack in October last year, he was ordered to have no contact with the victim. The 26-year-old woman made an appearance in Baxter County Circuit Court in early March to tell the court her reasons for wanting the no contact order dropped, but Judge Gordon Webb turned down the victim's request.
The judge said he was concerned for the woman's safety as well as that of her children because the threats and actions reportedly taken by Rogers were "of a very severe type."
At the time of the alleged attack, the girlfriend was pregnant with Rogers' child, according to court records.
The incident came to light when the victim approached a Baxter County deputy sheriff on routine patrol just after 2 a.m. on Oct. 3 last year.
She said she and her children had been at Rogers' home when he is alleged to have become agitated and shoved her against a wall.
The victim said while she was packing her belongings in an attempt to leave the residence, Rogers went into the kitchen and emerged carrying a large butcher's knife. She told investigators Rogers started walking toward her saying, "I'm going to kill it," in reference to the couple's unborn baby. The victim was reported to be six months pregnant at the time.
The victim said she was able to grab Rogers' hand and deflect the knife away from her body. She said she was also somewhat successful in calming Rogers down.
At one point during the altercation, Rogers is alleged to have followed the victim into a bedroom, grabbed her by the throat, punched her in the face and took her cellphone. He is reported to have told her, "you are going to die tonight." Rogers choked the victim until she passed out. She told investigators she remembered seeing a clock in the bedroom just before losing consciousness. It read 12:56 a.m., and she said when she awoke it was 1:15 a.m.
The woman said when she came to, Rogers attempted to apologize for the incident, but she told him she was leaving. She said initially Rogers would not allow her to exit the bedroom. She waited until he fell asleep, slipped out with her children, saw the deputy and reported what had happened.
Rogers is charged with aggravated assault on a family member, second-degree domestic battery, first-degree false imprisonment and interfering with an emergency communications device. The first three charges are felonies, the last a misdemeanor.
According to the scheduling order in the case, the final hearing prior to trial is set for Aug. 1 and a jury trial to begin Aug. 19.
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