ST. THOMAS — A Michigan man who moved to the territory nine months ago is now living in the St. Thomas jail, after police said he terrorized a woman, holding her captive and beating her in a bar bathroom, according to a probable cause fact sheet filed in V.I. Superior Court.
Delbert Crawford was arrested Sunday and charged with second-degree assault, disturbance of the peace, and false imprisonment. He was charged under the domestic violence statute, and held without bail until his appearance before Magistrate Judge Simone Van Holten-Turnbull Monday morning.
The incident occurred at around 11 p.m. Sunday, when police responded to a report of an assault at Dog House Pub in Havensight.
The victim said she and a friend had been dropped off at the bar, and she noticed Crawford, her ex-boyfriend, following her, according to the fact sheet.
The women decided to go to the bathroom to get away from Crawford, but he ran inside after them and pushed the door closed, trapping the women, according to police.
The victim said she screamed for help, and Crawford used two hands to choke her while people began knocking on the bathroom door, but he refused to open it, according to the fact sheet.
The victim’s friend screamed and was able to get out of the bathroom and notify a security guard, who intervened, according to the fact sheet.
The guard told the victim to call police but she “was so afraid that she begged him not to call cops,” and he was able to convince her to call 911 for help because “the incident could have been much worse,” according to the fact sheet.
In court Monday, the judge said Crawford has multiple previous convictions, including a 2011 assault and battery case, “so I’m very concerned about the victim in this matter.”
Van Holten-Turnbull set bail at $50,000.
“I believe that he is a serious danger to this young lady, and I cannot lower the bail at this time without knowing more about Mr. Crawford,” she said. “It’s very disconcerting and concerning.”