A Shreveport man with a long history of domestic violence pleaded guilty in Caddo District Court this week and must serve a decade behind bars.
District Judge Chris Victory handed down the 10-year term for a fourth-offense domestic battery to Jevorish Dewayne Dennis, 32, who admitted the abuse Monday, April 26, 2021 in Victory’s court.
On May 25, 2020, Shreveport Police were dispatched to a local motel in reference to a 911 hangup call and found the victim of the attack distraught and covered in mud. She reported that her husband of two years, Mr. Dennis, had hit her with a stick and punched her in the jaw. She added that Dennis had thrown her to the ground and strangled her. Abrasions around her neck were consistent with a strangulation. She told police Dennis attacked her because she would not allow him to use her vehicle.
Dennis has several prior convictions for misdemeanor domestic battery, mostly in Shreveport City Court. In 2018, Dennis was convicted of his first felony domestic abuse charge, Domestic Abuse Battery 3rd offense; he received the maximum five year sentence in that case. Some of those previous convictions involved the same victim as in the present case.
Under Louisiana law, the punishment for domestic violence increases when the offender is convicted multiple times. This enables district attorneys to file more serious charges and provides judges with the authority to hand down more severe punishments.
This case was considered serious, not only because of Dennis’s prior convictions, but also because he strangled his victim. According to the Training Institute on Strangulation Prevention, researchers and law enforcement professionals have determined that nonfatal strangulation is a leading indicator of escalating violence in a relationship and an important risk factor for homicide in women. Abusers who strangle their victims are more likely to kill them in later attacks.
A complication in this case was the victim did not want to testify against her abuser and wanted to dismiss the charges, a common scenario in many family violence cases. The state proceeded anyway because often, the victim’s lack of cooperation is due to the abuser’s influence and manipulation.
“Domestic violence crimes are a high priority in our office, because we know that those victims are especially vulnerable,” says Caddo Parish District Attorney James E. Stewart Sr. “Our goal is to hold abusers accountable and to connect victims with the services that help them to regain control of their lives.”
In addition to the 10-year hard labor sentence, Dennis was issued a permanent protective order effective even after his release from prison. for the victim that will remain in place even after the defendant’s release from prison.
Dennis was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Britney A. Green of the DA’s Special Victims Unit and ADA Brittany Arvie. He was defended by Charles “Pete” Kammer.