Chattanooga Man Arrested After Bleach Attack Leaves Ex-Girlfriend “Half-Dead”

Wednesday, May 22, 2019
Johnny Dewayne Dortch
Johnny Dewayne Dortch

Johnny Dewayne Dortch, 36, has been charged with aggravated domestic assault after police said he poured boiling bleach on ex-girlfriend Kathleen Austin-Cook and her neighbor, Jimario Gibson.

In the incident on May 5 at a house on Wilson Street, police said Ms. Cook and Mr. Gibson were awoken by Dortch pouring bleach on both of them. Gibson had spent the night with Ms. Cook.

Dortch then attacked Cook with a hammer before leaving.

Ms. Cook sustained burns to her hands, face, neck, shoulders, and back, while Mr. Gibson sustained a burn to his left hand and a laceration to his head.

Mr. Gibson described Ms. Cook as “half-dead” after the attack.

The burns were so severe that Ms. Cook stated that even wearing a bathrobe over the burns caused her to be in pain.

Ms. Cook was promptly rushed to Erlanger Hospital, where her throat had begun to close up due to the severe injuries. She was then quickly moved to Vanderbilt Hospital and placed under the care of their burn unit.

Mr. Gibson said he did not want to press charges at the time, saying he understood why Dortch was upset.

 

 


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