Domestic Violence Survivor Shares Her Story In Hopes Of Helping Others
MIDVALE, Utah — A Utah woman said she’s grateful to be alive after allegedly being stabbed and kidnapped by her boyfriend.
The 34-year-old woman thought a new relationship was the start of a new life. Instead, it was a nightmare.
“In the beginning, it was like, ‘I will never hurt you, treat you the way you deserve to be treated,’ and I believed it,” said Nicole Dowdy.
Dowdy said her relationship started with all the right words, but the promises were short lived.
“He had hit me in my face and hit me in my ear and split the back of my ear open,” said Dowdy. “It’s kind of scary because I’ve always been so strong and independent. How did I let someone like that get into my head and be able to do this to me and allow it?”
Dowdy said her boyfriend started using drugs and physically assaulting her shortly after they moved to Utah with her three children in May 2020.
“The first assault happened last year,” she said. “It was like, ‘I love you. I’m sorry. I’m never going to do that again. I’m going to be better.’ And I believed it.”
#EXCLUSIVE– A 34yo Domestic Violence Survivor is sharing her story in hopes of helping others. Her boyfriend stabbed her then forced her to drive for hours… How she finally escaped @KSL5TV .If you need help 1-800-897-LINK, UT Domestic Violence Coalition. pic.twitter.com/1PIpu9CZnx
— Garna Mejia KSL (@GarnaMejiaKSL) May 8, 2021
Instead, the abuse grew more violent, until last Thursday when 32 year-old Albert Givens stabbed Dowdy in their hotel room.
“He jabbed the knife into my side, and as soon as he did that, I felt the warmth and I knew something was wrong,” said Dowdy.
Dowdy said she spent the next several hours looking for a way out.
“To get help because I knew he was going to end up killing me,” she said.
Police said Albert forced her to drive them through Midvale — first to a park, then a cemetery.
“All I could think that morning was, ‘Please, let somebody pull in. Let an officer pull in or something,'” said Dowdy.
He even forced her to get breakfast from a fast food drive-thru.
“I was praying somebody would see the black eye or see that there was a bloody towel, and nobody ever did,” said Dowdy.
It wasn’t until Dowdy said she convinced Givens to let her go inside a business that she was able to get an employee’s attention.
“I asked the lady in there. I was like, ‘How can I get away?’ I know she saw my black eye because I wasn’t wearing sunglasses and she took me into the manager’s office,” said Dowdy.
Dowdy was finally able to call police.
She dropped charges for three previous incidents in the last year, but said this time was different.
“If I would’ve pressed the charges from previous cases, I wouldn’t be in the situation that I am in right now,” she said. “I wouldn’t almost had my life taken from me.”
Dowdy said she wants to move forward for her kids.
“I can’t allow my children to grow up without a mother,” she said.
She also said the encouragement of complete strangers gives her strength.
Dowdy said she was touched to see the outpouring of support on social media following KSL’s coverage of her kidnapping.
“I mean, it’s nice to know that people that don’t know me personally, or that I may never even meet or see, actually care about me,” she said. “It’s really heartwarming to know that there is that support and there are people that are hoping the best for me.”
Givens faces attempted homicide and aggravated kidnapping charges.
Dowdy said she hopes her story can help others.
If you or someone you know needs help getting out of an abusive situation, help is available 24-hours a day at the statewide number 1-800-897-LINK (5465).
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