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COCOA - A 51-year-old Cocoa man held a woman captive at his home for five days, during which time he raped, beat, strangled and starved her, the sheriff's office said Saturday.
Charles Tanner was arrested Wednesday on charges of sexual battery, aggravated battery, felony battery by second or subsequent offense, false imprisonment, aggravated assault and sexual cyber harassment. He is being held without bail at the Brevard County Jail.
On June 8, Brevard County Sheriff's Office deputies responded to a call from one of Tanner's neighbors after a naked woman arrived, covered in bruises and asking for help, an arrest affidavit said. She said she had been held hostage at Tanner's home for five days.
After receiving treatment for rib fractures and bruising across multiple areas of her body at Rockledge Regional Hospital and undergoing a sexual assault examination at a women's health clinic, the woman was interviewed June 10 by deputies. She told them she went to Tanner's home on or around June 3 after he had reached out repeatedly through Facebook offering drugs. She said she was going through heroin withdrawal, and had known Tanner for about five years.
At his home on Pineda Street in Cocoa, Tanner gave her drugs, the affidavit said, though it did not specify what drugs she was given. He asked for sex for payment, and the woman agreed.
During a conversation afterward, the woman told Tanner, who is white, that she was in a relationship with a Black man, the affidavit said. The affidavit did not say what race the woman is. Tanner became enraged and kicked her in the head, she told deputies.
Over the next few days, Tanner beat and berated the woman for having a relationship with a Black man, calling the man a racist slur, the affidavit said. During this time, he was smoking methamphetamine and forced the woman to have sex with him at least 10 times.
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Additionally, he used multiple objects to penetrate her, then sent pictures of the objects to the woman's friends on Facebook, the affidavit said. She was unable to use her phone while at his home, as Tanner kept it the whole time.
During the five days, the woman was locked in Tanner's bedroom, with Tanner sleeping on top of her or in a recliner barricading the bedroom door, the affidavit said. He told her repeatedly that he was going to kill her and at one point held a butcher knife to her cheek, telling her he wanted to cut her across her face, deputies said.
On the fifth day, Tanner became paranoid due to prolonged use of methamphetamine, the affidavit said. Believing police were coming, he made the woman lie in bed and told her if the police arrived, he would slit her throat with a knife. As he became more paranoid, Tanner hit her with an extension cord, climbed on top of her and put a pillow over her face until she lost consciousness, the affidavit said.
That night, the woman managed to maneuver out from under Tanner's legs while he was sleeping, the affidavit said. She ran to a neighbor's home naked and without any of her belongings.
Brevard County Sheriff's Office recovered the images Tanner sent through Facebook depicting the woman unconscious and one of the objects the woman said Tanner had used to penetrate her, as well as a message he sent her father, in which he impersonated the woman, the affidavit said. Deputies found more than 50 conversations with people who had received pictures of the woman.
An arrest warrant was issued Tuesday, and Tanner was arrested Wednesday.
In December 2013, Tanner was arrested after a woman was seen running unclothed down the street before Tanner grabbed her and pulled her back into his home. She told law enforcement authorities that she was held against her will for the course of several days while he battered her, sexually battered her, used multiple objects to penetrate her and filmed himself urinating and defecating on her. She escaped while he was sleeping.
Tanner was found guilty of false imprisonment and two counts of aggravated battery. He was sentenced to five years in prison and was released in March 2018.
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This article originally appeared on Florida Today: Cocoa man charged with sexual battery in five-day hostage incident