Man charged with assaulting woman, holding her against her will

Published 6:20 pm Wednesday, March 22, 2017

An Elizabethton man faces multiple charges after police say he forced his way into his former girlfriend’s home, assaulted her, and held her against her will.

Officers of the Elizabethton Police Department arrested Brandon John Ward, 36, of Elizabethton, on Tuesday and charged him with aggravated assault under domestic violence, false imprisonment, theft of property, and two counts of aggravated burglary.

According to court documents, the charges against Ward stem from an investigation that began on Monday when officers responded to Sycamore Shoals Hospital to speak with a woman who told staff she had been assaulted.

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The woman told officers her ex-boyfriend, whom she identified as Ward, had texted her multiple times asking to see her. She said she agreed to allow him to come to her home to pick up an item which belonged to him, telling him she would place it on her porch for him. When he arrived, the woman told officers, he began knocking on the door asking to see her.

“When she opened the door he forced his way inside and pushed her onto the couch in the living room,” EPD Sgt. Shane Darling said in the affidavit of complaint. “Ward repeatedly asked why she didn’t want to be with him and she replied she was done and wanted him out of her house and out of her life.”

“She attempted to get up, he became enraged and pushed her back down on the couch,” Darling added. “She advised that she heard the couch break when she fell back.”

The woman told officers she tried to call 911, but Ward took the phone away from her. During the incident, the woman said Ward took a handgun from the waistband of his pants and brandished it.

At one point, Ward sat down on the floor, and the woman told officers she took advantage of the opportunity and ran out of her home to try to get away.

“She related that he ran after her and grabbed her. She advised that she screamed for help and kept trying to get away,” Darling said. “He eventually let go, and she ran toward the hospital. (The woman) advised that she saw Ward get into his vehicle and leave. When she arrived at the hospital, she asked the front desk clerk to call for law enforcement.”

Officers went to the woman’s home to make sure Ward was not hiding inside and also to try to find her keys and phone. Officers were not able to locate either the woman’s cell phone or her keys. Another officer then escorted the woman home and helped her search for the items, but they were still not able to locate them.

“On (Tuesday)officers were dispatched back to the residence and found Ward had used the key that he had taken the night before and made entry to the residence,” Darling said. “Both Ward and (the woman) stated he had returned to gather his belongings and return her keys.”

Officers again interviewed the woman, and she stated when Ward was at her home the previous night she was in fear for her life and concerned that Ward would use the weapon against her.

Officers took Ward into custody and transported him to the Carter County Detention Center, where he remains held on a $20,000 bond. Ward is scheduled to appear in Carter County General Sessions Court on Friday.