by Julia Martinez, Julietta Bisharyan and Lea Barrios
Man Allegedly Beats Woman in Davis Complex Parking Lot before Attempting to Prevent Witness from Calling 911
By Julia Martinez
A man allegedly inflicted violence on his partner and refused to let her exit their vehicle before he attempted to silence the witnesses who tried stopping him.
Jesus Reyes is charged with the felonies of inflicting corporal injury, false imprisonment with violence, and attempting to intimidate and dissuade both witnesses involved. In April of 2019, a 16-year-old high school student and his mother were in the parking lot of their apartment complex in West Davis when Mr. Reyes allegedly came speeding in and parked abruptly. He allegedly began beating, punching, and refusing to let the woman passenger exit the vehicle, despite her attempt to get out. The witnesses yelled at Mr. Reyes, “Let her out!” before knocking on the neighbor’s door and having her call 911. Mr. Reyes then allegedly pointed at both of the witnesses and told them not to tell anyone before speeding back out of the parking lot.
The witness called to the stand was the now-17-year-old high school student who gave the information of the incident to 911. He was in the parking lot to show his mother the damage on his vehicle from a minor accident he was involved in earlier that afternoon, when Mr. Reyes allegedly drove in at an alarming speed before parking about 10 feet away from them.
He stated that Mr. Reyes was slapping, hitting and headbutting the victim a significant amount of times in the passenger seat. The victim tried to escape by opening the car door and various wrappers fell out of the car onto the ground, leaving behind evidence. The defendant allegedly grabbed the woman with force to prevent her from exiting and continued hitting her. The mother began yelling at Mr. Reyes to let the woman go.
According to the student, the victim appeared to be unresponsive and very tired looking. He described the victim to be a Caucasian woman with blonde, curly hair and a thin build, whom he later identified in a photo presented to him by the deputy district attorney.
Mr. Reyes then allegedly yelled racial slurs at the witness’s mother, due to the headscarf she was wearing which represented her religion, according to the witness. He emphasized how he feared for both his and his mother’s safety, so he ran to the neighbor to call 911.
According to the student, before Mr. Reyes sped out of the parking lot, he allegedly pointed to the witness and his mother and stated, “You don’t tell anyone,” attempting to prevent them from calling 911.
In a later interview, the witness said it was possible Mr. Reyes said that verbatim, but he did not exactly recall. The defense emphasized a possible discrepancy because, in the transcript, the witness stated Mr. Reyes said, “‘You don’t tell anyone, or something.” He emphasized “or something” to show the witness did not recall exactly what was said.
The witness testified that Mr. Reyes then sped out of the parking lot with the door still open and the victim’s foot outside of the door. He followed the car out of the parking lot and memorized the license plate number to give to 911. He described the vehicle coming to a sudden stop, before continuing down the road.
After running back to his mother and the neighbor on the phone with 911, he took the phone, gave the license plate number and explained the incident to the dispatcher.
He stated law enforcement then showed up shortly after the call and he described the incident to them.
The student described the suspect as a white or Hispanic male, bald, with a large build. When showed a photo line-up the night of the incident, he identified two men that were possibly the suspect. In court, he identified Mr. Reyes “possibly” as the suspect.
The witness stated he was nervous in April 2019 when the incident happened, but this nervousness was not related to his minor car accident that happened earlier that day. He emphasized that he was most afraid for both his safety and his family’s, as well as that of the alleged victim.
Man Faces Jury Trial after Allegedly Imprisoning and Beating Girlfriend in Vehicle
By Julietta Bisharyan and Lea Barrios
Jesus Reyes is being brought to trial regarding a felony charge of domestic battery. In April 2019, the defendant allegedly drove with his girlfriend to a parking lot outside an apartment complex in West Davis and repeatedly beat her. The physical altercation stemmed from a verbal argument and left the woman with a swollen face before they drove off.
The first witness called was a tenant of the complex. Deputy District Attorney Daniele Schlehofer asked about the incident that occurred in April of 2019. He testified to seeing the assault as he was walking in the parking lot with his mother after coming home from school.
The witness stated they saw two individuals in the car fighting. His mother began yelling at the defendant, “Let her go! Let her go!” Out of fear, the witness ran to the neighbor’s door and asked for a phone to call 911. Following the call, the driver began to drive away with the woman.
The witness chased after the car to record the license plate number. The police arrived shortly after. He was then shown a line-up from which he picked out a suspect.
The next witness was the first witness’s mother, who lived with him in the apartment complex. She had just come home from work and her son was showing her his car, which he had damaged earlier in the day.
The witness testified to seeing a car speed up and stop in front of her and her son. She noticed that the car had parked rather abruptly, considering they were near a school zone.
Allegedly, she saw the man repeatedly hit the individual in the passenger’s seat. The witness first thought that the individual was a child, but upon further inspection, she saw that the passenger was a petite woman who appeared to be in her late thirties. The woman then opened the car door and stuck her foot out as not to let the door close.
The witness recalled seeing the man allegedly hit his head against the woman’s head, which she described as “extremely violent.” The man also punched and slapped the woman. The witness repeatedly yelled at the man to stop, to which he responded, “Mind your business!”
As the woman opened the car door, trash fell out onto the ground. The witness picked up a receipt from Burger King which she then turned into the police who showed up 10 minutes after the phone call.
Deputy DA Schlehofer called her third witness, the girlfriend and alleged victim of the defendant. The witness recounted the day of the alleged attack. The incident began with an argument in which the defendant accused the witness of “checking out” another man in a tire shop they were in earlier that day.
After going to the tire shop they went to a “slough,” or waterway, where the witness said she climbed up a large tree while the defendant was in the car. She said that while she was climbing down, a branch gave away under her causing her to slip and a branch hit her in the eye. When she was asked by the prosecution if she or the defendant had taken drugs or been drinking that day, she replied, “No” – and that she couldn’t recall.
She continued that they were on their way to a friend’s apartment, and they were arguing. She became irate and slapped him across the face then threatened to throw herself out of the car while it was moving.
The prosecutor asked if the defendant used his head to hit her head. She said their heads collided accidentally when she was reaching for the keys, but he did not do it on purpose. When they arrived at the parking lot of the apartment complex she claimed he was shaking her to calm her down, but he did not hit her. She said that while he was shaking her the wound on her eye from when she was climbing the tree opened and her face began bleeding.
Deputy DA Schlehofer showed a letter that the witness sent to the District Attorney’s office which asked for the charges to be dropped. She pointed out that the witness wrote that she sustained an eye injury from the defendant. The witness said she was “in a panic” when she wrote the letter and also, “Whenever I would type it would delete half of it.”
The witness stated in court that she loves the defendant and is in communication with him through text while he is in jail.
The trial is scheduled to resume the afternoon of January 27.