ENGLEWOOD, Fla. (WWSB) - A woman arrested earlier this year for allegedly leaving her children in the car while she was drinking inside a bar has found herself behind bars again, this time for battery.
Deputies say on Veterans Day, November 11, Kristie Leigh Johnson, 35, of Englewood attacked a man at a home in Rotonda West in Charlotte County. The victim told deputies that Johnson punched him, kicked him in the testicles, bit him and pulled his hair, knocking him to the ground where he hit his head on a shelf as he fell and then the cement floor.
The victim was taken to the hospital and called the sheriff’s office two days later, after he was released.
He and a witness both told deputies that they saw Johnson drinking alcohol straight from the bottle and the victim said he “knew it was going to be a bad night because she gets out of control when she drinks alcohol.”
The victim said later that night, he was watching Monday Night Football when Johnson grabbed the remote from his hand. When he attempted to take it back, that’s when he says Johnson attacked him.
The victim left the room and went into the kitchen. He was speaking to one of two witnesses when he says Johnson grabbed him by the back of his head and slung him to the floor. He says he hit his head on a shelf as he was falling and was briefly knocked unconscious.
Both witnesses told deputies the same story.
Afterward, one of the witnesses told deputies that the victim went to lay down. After about 20 minutes, she tried to wake him up but the victim had trouble waking. That’s when they called 911.
Johnson’s mother told deputies she was watching her daughter’s children on Veterans Day and that Johnson returned the next morning to pick them up. Johnson’s mother says she asked her daughter why she bit the victim and Johnson replied that he was being “a d***** bag.” Johnson’s mother told deputies she asked no further questions out of fear of Johnson’s rage.
Johnson was arrested November 13. Deputies say in addition to battery, she’s facing charges for violating her probation from an arrest in March.
In that case, Johnson was charged with five counts of child neglect for allegedly leaving her children in the car while she was drinking inside a bar.
Deputies say on March 27, they were called to a bar on South McCall Road in Port Charlotte, where a man had blocked his wife’s vehicle into a parking space. Inside the vehicle were their five children - a 5-year-old, a 3-year-old, an 11-month-old, and two 20-day-old infants.
The man told deputies that he had left home around 6:30pm to go to work and his wife, Johnson, was supposed to take their five children to her mother’s home in Rotonda West.
The man got home after work later that evening and discovered Johnson wasn’t there so he called her. He told deputies his 5-year-old daughter answered and said they were at McDonald’s. He called again a short while later and his daughter said Johnson was not in the car with them. The man told his daughter to honk the horn to get an adult’s attention, but no one came to the vehicle.
The man left his house to find his family. That's when he spotted his wife's vehicle at a bar on South McCall Road. He blocked her vehicle into a parking space and called the sheriff's office.
Deputies spoke to the bartender, who told them that Johnson had two drinks and had spent around 30 minutes in the bar. They spoke to Johnson but say she didn’t answer their questions.
Johnson was arrested and charged. In that case, she pleaded nolo contendere, which allows a defendant to be sentenced without admitting guilty, and was given 12 months of probation. Part of the conditions of her probation included not using “intoxicants to excess,” as well as having a mental health evaluation and attending and completing parenting class.
As a result of her most recent arrest for battery, the child neglect case has been re-opened.