[PHOTO CREDITS: Lake County Sheriff’s Office]
[Original Publish Date: 02/18/21]
LEESBURG, Florida — A man accused of holding a woman he has two children with against her will is being held in the Lake County Jail on $34,000 bond, on charges of kidnapping, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and domestic battery, according to a probable cause affidavit.
On Jan. 24, a woman went to Leesburg Police Department and told an LPD corporal Harry Walter Carter Jr. had held her against her will for more than three weeks. A detective responded to LPD and the victim told her Carter, 39, came to her home in Leesburg on Dec. 31 and she agreed to allow Carter to take their toddler son to the park while she walked to the store, but instead of taking the boy to the park, Carter met her at the store, according to the affidavit.
While they were walking home from the store, the victim told police, Carter hit her in the face and knocked her out. When she came to, she tried to return to the store and Carter hit her with an “uppercut” and severely damaged her right front tooth, the affidavit states. Carter then pulled out a box cutter and told the woman he would “slit her throat’” if she alerted “her people” and they would “watch her die.” Carter then ran the box cutter over the victim’s hand to show her how sharp it was, she told police.
Carter led the woman and their son to a small apartment complex where Carter’s brother is alleged to have picked them up and taken them to Lee Motel, 201 South 14th Street, Leesburg where they stayed for a week and a half. Carter allowed the victim to use his phone to contact her family members to bring food for her son, but Carter would make her wait in the bathroom when they arrived, as she was not allowed to see or speak to her family, according to the affidavit.
They left the motel and spent one or two nights at Carter’s friend’s house, went back to Lee Motel for one night and then to Carter’s father’s mobile home in Tavares for two to three weeks, she told police. On Jan. 24, they attended a BBQ near Leesburg High School and the victim had an opportunity to separate from Carter and she called her sister for help. The victim’s sister and father arrived shortly after the call and picked up the toddler and the victim and immediately drove the victim to LPD, according to the affidavit.
The victim, who had a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a child, had several inconsistencies during her interview, the detective noted in the affidavit, but the detective believed it was due to her TBI.
A warrant was issued for Carter’s arrest Jan. 29, and he was arrested on the warrant Tuesday.
Our Editor-in-Chief, Marilyn M. Aciego, began writing for Lake Legal News in 2010. Born and raised in Lake County, she is a graduate of Umatilla High School and Lake-Sumter State College. She started her journalism career at LSSC, where she was editor of both student publications, The Angler and The Odyssey. Her professional career began at the Daily Commercial in 2004 where she covered cops and courts the majority of her time there until she left in 2009. Currently, along with being Editor-in-Chief of Lake Legal News, she is the Florida bureau chief for an international media organization. She has made more than two dozen appearances on live national television, including Nancy Grace and the Greta Van Susteren show, along with her appearance on Evil Twins. Contact her with breaking news, tips, and feedback by sending an e-mail to 352Tips@gmail.com. You can also contact us on our Facebook page — and make sure you “Like” and “Follow us” there. [PHOTO CREDIT: Bonnie Whicher]