Domestic Abuse Survivor Speaks About Being Held Hostage By Husband

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ROGERS (KFSM) -- A mother of two who survived a brutal attack by her husband in 2014 has become a domestic abuse victim advocate in Northwest Arkansas.

Ashley Weaver said her husband attacked her and held her and their two children hostage in the early morning hours of February 13, 2014. In the weeks before, Ashley and Devin Weaver agreed to a divorce.

Ashley said she did not see what happened next coming after Devin made dinner for the family just hours before.

Ashley said her husband had then gone out drinking while she was asleep and something did not feel quite right, so she called police and locked all the doors in their house near Beaver Lake, but it was not enough to keep him out. Devin broke through the glass door at the back of the house.

"Within seconds the door was shattered," she said. "I had no time to think, no time to run. He came bolting in there and hit me as hard as he could with his fist."

She said he hit her so hard she thought he had broken her orbital socket. Ashley said Devin then got a gun from the closet and used it like a baseball bat to hit her in the back of the head. She said her two daughters, who were two and four at the time, were hiding in their bedroom.

"I am just praying out loud 'please God do not let me die I want to see my children tomorrow,'" Ashley said.

Once police arrived, Ashley said she saw her chance and she ran for the front door. Just as she made it out the house an officer was at the door getting ready to break it down. Ashley was immediately taken by ambulance to the hospital after suffering severe facial injuries.

"I had a doctor tell me 'you are a walking miracle,'" she said. "I do not even know how you are alive, I do not know how you are not brain dead."

After a standoff with police, Devin let their two children go and after shooting at officers, they shot back striking him several times. Ashley said Devin was taken to the hospital by helicopter, but survived.

She said in October 2014, her now-ex-husband pleaded guilty to felony first-degree domestic battery and is serving a 16-year sentence in prison.

Ashley said had she not called police when she did, she may not be alive. Since then, Ashley said she has gotten professional help to overcome post-traumatic stress and has been speaking publicly about what happened to her to urge other domestic violence victims to get help too before it is too late.

"I think in the end he wanted attention, and he wanted my attention, my love," she said. "And it is just a cycle with victims and abusers they go hand in hand."

Ashley will be sharing her story at the Northwest Arkansas Women's Shelter on Oct. 28 as part of a closing ceremony for their Silent Witness event, which brings awareness to domestic abuse victims with silhouettes of Arkansans who have died following domestic violence incidents. The opening ceremony for the event will be held Sept. 26.

Ashley said she is now seven months pregnant and is expecting a boy. She is also engaged to be married.