One morning a week before Christmas in a quiet neighborhood north of Ga. 96 with manicured lawns and $200,000 houses, a woman went for a predawn jog in southwestern Warner Robins.
About 5:30 a.m., according to what she has told the police, a young man pulled up beside her in a car and asked if he could run with her. She told him no. But that apparently did not deter him.
What allegedly happened next came out in Houston County Superior Court on Thursday at a bond hearing for 21-year-old Wesley Alexander Davis.
Davis lives in Bonaire, about seven miles from where the Dec. 17 encounter is said to have taken place on Twelve Oaks Drive in a subdivision bounded by Lake Joy Road to the west, Feagin Mill Road to the north and Ga. 96 to the south.
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Prosecutor Erikka Williams said the victim, a 53-year-old woman, felt threatened enough to pull a knife, which she apparently carried for protection, and defend herself.
“She pulled out her knife, and he continued to approach her and eventually grabbed her by the crotch and threw her to the ground,” Williams said at the hearing, where the state would ask a judge to deny Williams bond. “At that point, she alleges she started swinging and she connected.”
The woman, who screamed for help, said that her attacker, wounded, drove off but before leaving circled back “to see where she was,” Williams said.
Not long after the incident, Davis was treated for stab wounds to his side at an area hospital. Williams said Davis, a dark-haired, 5-foot-10, 200-pound landscaper who lives with his parents, has no known criminal history.
The prosecutor went on to say that Davis hadn’t known the victim — that the victim was a stranger — and that when Davis went to the hospital he “gave another story” to authorities to explain his injuries.
Davis was arrested and jailed three days later on charges of attempted rape and aggravated assault. He had been in the county lockup until Thursday, when his lawyer stood before Judge Katherine K. Lumsden and asked the judge to consider setting bond for Davis.
Davis’ attorney, Ashley Deadwyler-Heuman, told the judge that Davis had been out “partying, drinking … hitting on girls” at a club the night of the incident, and that in the small hours of Dec. 17 he headed home.
“As he’s driving, … he encounters an attractive female jogger,” Deadwyler-Heuman said. “He approaches her, he says, with the intent to make a move on her, hit on her. Her story, I think, differs, and she was afraid that he was trying to abduct her, attempt to rape her. She ultimately ends up stabbing him.”
Deadwyler-Heuman described Davis as “extremely remorseful” and “willing to admit his wrong.”
She said, “When I spoke with him … (he) said, ‘Look, I completely understand. This victim was terrified. I used poor judgment, but I never intended to rape her, kidnap her.’ … He said, ‘I completely understand where she’s coming from. … But I was not thinking clearly due to drinking, and this is completely out of my character.’ ”
After Deadwyler-Heuman spoke, a man named Tom Mobley, a former teacher and basketball coach at Davis’ alma mater, Warner Robins High School, talked to the judge on Davis’ behalf.
Mobley stood before the bench and said he has known Davis since Davis was a child and, later, as a high school student.
“I never saw him be any sort of aggressive with a female,” Mobley said. “I don’t even remember seeing him be flirtatious with a female. … So I was shocked, and I think Wesley is a high-character person and I would completely vouch for him.”
When it came time to set or deny bond, Lumsden, the judge, considered Davis’ potential risk to others and set his bond at $10,000. She ordered him to wear an ankle monitor and be held under strict house arrest.
“It also goes without saying that you may have no contact with the victim,” Lumsden said, adding that Davis wasn’t to go anywhere near Twelve Oaks Drive. “You just need to stay out of that area. If that’s close to your house, it doesn’t really matter because you’ll be in your house.”
Davis, who didn’t speak at the hearing, gave a slight nod of acknowledgment and was led from the courtroom.