A young woman is recovering after allegedly being held captive and abused by a man in Spring, Texas, after meeting on a dating app.
According to a probable cause statement, 21-year-old Zachary Kent Mills and the woman — whose name has not been released — had begun talking on Christmas Eve via Bumble, a social media app. Upon meeting, the statement alleges the suspect rapidly became violent.
The woman had given Mills permission to come and pick her up, but as soon as they entered his apartment — located on the 1800 block of Augusta Pines, according to court documents — he allegedly tried to initiate sex and she declined his advances.
“He immediately began to physically assault her and would not let her leave the residence,” the statement claimed.
Mills reportedly began punching her as well as biting her face and neck. According to the woman, when Mills’ hands tired, he used a screwdriver handle to strike her instead.
This nightmare allegedly lasted for five days. The woman told investigators that when she tried to leave, Mills continued to assault her and would not let her go. While Mills held this woman in his apartment, she was reportedly not fed or given water.
According to investigators, the woman had severe bruising on most of her body. Both eyes had been blackened and she was left with bite marks and cuts to both her nose and throat.
The woman’s captivity came to an end when Mills left his apartment to visit his father, giving her an opportunity to escape, according to court documents.
Making a decision that may have saved her life, “[a]t that point the complainant gathered up her clothes and ran out the door and contacted the first people who she came in contact with and advised them of what had occurred,” the affidavit reads.
Mills was arrested and charged with felony aggravated kidnapping. He was booked into the Harris County Jail where he posted a $50,000 bond. He has been ordered to keep away from the alleged victim and is under house arrest wearing an ankle monitor until his next hearing on March 3.
Harris County Pct. 4 Constable Mark Herman told KPRC of Houston that additional charges may be filed as the investigation goes on. The victim’s identity has not been released.
Mills’ lawyer, Chris Denuna, told People magazine that his client has pleaded not guilty to the “very egregious allegations” and that he has no prior criminal history.
“I have not received any discovery or evidence from the district attorney’s office yet. Until then once we receive that discovery then we will have a better idea which direction this case is going,” Denuna explained. “In the meantime, as the constitution and due process provides he is presumed innocent.”
Bumble released a statement about the incident to KPRC of Houston saying, “We are shocked and saddened to hear about this horrible crime. We blocked this member as soon as we were made aware of this situation and in accordance with our Community Guidelines. We also have a dedicated law enforcement team available to respond to any requests from law enforcement as needed.”
According to the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office, a sexual assault occurs every two minutes in the United States. In Texas, one in five women will reportedly have been the victim of sexual violence at some point in her lifetime.
Citywide in Dallas, there were 520 incidents of general assault recorded in December — 62 of which occurred in District 2, which is overseen by Councilmember Jesse Moreno, The Dallas Express’ current Crime Boss. As reported by The Dallas Express, city officials have not been effective in protecting Dallas residents from an ongoing yearlong crime wave.