By Isabel Garbarino and Paulina Buelna
MODESTO, CA – The victim in a domestic violence case testified here in a domestic violence case Monday in Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge Linda McFadden’s courtroom about how she had a loaded gun pointed at her face by her partner.
The victim claimed that Jeremy Miller took the gun that he typically kept in the top drawer in his dresser and pointed it at her face. She stated that she “felt betrayed and scared,” adding she had previously been held at gunpoint by a robber, and the events that occurred with Miller reintroduced that past trauma.
According to the victim, the suspect had also caused some bruising to her forearms and inflicted pain to the victim’s ankles, noting, she had prior injuries on her ankles which caused the area to be prone to further injury if touched. Miller, she said, was aware of this when he grabbed her by the ankles and pulled her off of the bed.
While being cross-examined by the prosecutor and Defense Attorney Arron Villalobos, the descriptive phrase “horsing around” was used frequently throughout questioning as the victim referred to interactions between herself and Miller.
The exact definition of these words was not explained by the victim but they implied that she and Miller liked to engage in a sort of play fighting. The victim stated that this “horsing around” would leave her with bruises on occasion. She also proclaimed that they would “often hit” each other while horsing around.
Attorney Villalobos during his questioning tried to infer the “horsing around” was consensual and not a battery against Miller, his client.
However, the victim claimed the defendant oftentimes crossed the boundary of “horsing around” and turned their “horsing around” interactions into abuse.
Attorney Villalobos also suggested there may have been alcohol and blood thinners involved, and how these things could have caused her bruising instead of Miller.
The victim said bruising could easily occur while on blood thinners, but charged Miller caused several of the bruises on her forearm. She also stated alcohol was used in their relationship, but it did not impair her from the memory of abuse that occurred.
After the victim’s cross-examinations, she appeared to be tired and traumatized. She did not want to look at pictures of her bruises or at the gun that was held to her head.
Attorney Villalobos pleaded for Judge McFadden to reduce Miller’s charge to a misdemeanor instead of felony, but the judge was unpersuaded because of the bruising on the victim’s forearm. The charges remains a felony and the next steps is to go forward to trial.