An Ocala man allegedly slammed the door on deputies before being arrested on charges of battering a woman and trying to keep her from calling 911.
Jeremiah Willard Verts, 29, was charged simple domestic battery, obstruction of justice by tampering with a victim, and resisting an officer without violence after the incident, which happened Sunday evening.
Marion County sheriff’s deputies responded to a Publix store, where the victim said she fled to after Verts became belligerent and violent when he accused her of being with other people. The victim said Verts appeared to be drinking heavily when she returned home from work, according to the sheriff’s office report.
The victim said she called her friend to meet her at the store, but while she was on the phone, she saw Verts walking in the Publix parking lot with a child. The victim said she tried to get the child to get in the vehicle with her but was unable to, the report said.
The victim continued trying to get the child not the car while she called 911. As she was giving the call taker a description of Verts, he opened the car door and grabbed the phone in an attempt to get it away from her. The victim said she was able to hold onto the phone, but Verts knocked it into the side of her head, and during the struggle for the phone, her head hit the driver’s side door, according to the report.
The victim’s friend told a deputy that when she arrived, she saw Verts talking in a rough manner and leaving the area. She said she called 911 and gave the phone to the victim, the report said.
The deputies responded to Verts’ residence and talked to him through the cracked open front door, but when they asked him to step outside, he slammed the door in their faces. The deputies ordered Verts to step out of the house multiple times, according to the report.
A deputy observed Verts through the window, crying and yelling as he held on to the child. He was pacing around the house and had barricaded the front door with a chair. The deputy coaxed the child to come out of the house through a front open bedroom window that didn’t have a screen, the report said.
Verts later ran to the open front window in an aggressive manner. The deputy grabbed him by the shirt through the window, but Verts resisted and broke free. The deputy used a taser on him through the window but it had no effect. Verts eventually complied and came out the front door, and he was arrested, according to the report.
Verts told the deputy he tried to take the phone away from the victim but stopped when he realized he was on the phone with 911. He was taken to the Marion County Jail and held on $3,000 bond. Verts will appear in Marion County Court on Feb. 4.