Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
KEARNS -- An arrest warrant is now out for a Kearns man who prosecutors say kicked, hit and whipped his pregnant girlfriend during a fight in mid-August. Deputies were called to the house near 5100 south and 4400 West after family members intervened.
Investigators say during the fight, the suspect knocked the pregnant victim to the ground and began kicking her in the stomach. He then took off his belt and hit her as she tried to crawl away.
Deputies say when they arrived at the scene, the victim refused medical help and was not cooperative in the investigation.
Regugio Rico Alcantar, 32, was eventually arrested but then released after serving two days in jail.
When deputies returned to follow up on the case, they say they found Alcantar back in the home, hiding in the closet.
On Monday, Alcantar was charged with assault, a class-a misdemeanor, and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Caron Wittwer, of the Utah Domestic Violence Council, wasn't surprised to learn the victim had allowed Alcantar to return to the house.
"A woman will leave an abusive situation on the average of 7-14 times before she finally says, ‘OK, I've done enough,'" said Wittwer.
Wittwer and others are taking part in a summit on domestic violence at the Salt Palace. She works in Richfield, where she says the number of emergency shelter visits have skyrocketed over the past two years.
"The year before last we had over 2,200 shelter nights. Last year we had 4,746 shelter nights. In July and August of this year, which is our fiscal year, we've already had over a thousand nights," she said.
She believes the increase, in part, is due to stresses from the economy.