FREMONT – A man charged with violent offences had his bond reduced in district court yesterday, with several serious charges still levied against him. Joshua D. Henry aka Joshua D. Perez, threatened to murder his girlfriend and discharged a firearm in her direction, among other egregious offenses.
Henry threatened his girlfriend’s life during an hours-long argument at their home, wherein he repeatedly threatened to kill her if she left him. Around 3AM, the victim left the home for work. At that time, Henry engaged in a campaign of threats against the victim and her family, harassment over social media and text, and stalking. Henry threatened the victim with photo bombardment of weapons, threats to come to her work and kill her, threats to kill the victim’s mother, and promises of “an ambush.”
In fear for her life, the victim did not make a report to the Fremont Police department immediately – Henry also specifically threatened to kill the victim if she went to the police. About a month after the attack, while Henry was out of state for work, the victim was able to go to the police. “A lot of times, people assume a victim should know how to respond to circumstances like this,” said Deputy District Attorney, Sara Sopinski. “I don’t think we’re really wired to know how to handle such a situation immediately.”
The victim provided the Fremont Police department with photo evidence of the disturbing, graphic, expletive laced threats. The victim also described the night of the firearm discharge in a detailed affidavit. Fremont Police investigated, and uncovered more evidence to support the victim’s sworn statement.
During the argument, Henry reportedly fired his weapon into a mattress, less than a foot from the victim. The police investigation confirms that a gun was fired in the home consistent with the victim’s description, and they determined that the discharged bullet traveled “through a mattress and box spring, the [home’s] floor and then a mattress and box spring in the basement.”
When an initial attempt for a protection order was unsuccessful, Henry even messaged the victim to taunt her further.
Community domestic crisis counselors from The Bridge have told Sara Sopinski, Deputy District Attorney, that in their experience, Henry is extremely dangerous and should not be allowed in the community. Sopinski made this known at the hearing on Wednesday.
Despite all this, Judge Geoffrey Hall granted the defense’s request to reduce Henry’s bond from $500,000 with a 10% option, to $100,000 with a 10% option. Henry has been jailed for the last week, and defense attorney Leo Eskey argued that that his voluntary surrender to police should be a sign that the defendant will not flee the charges. Eskey also claimed that the $500,000 bond was beyond his client’s ability to pay, while the 10% option on $100,000 was within his means.
Joshua D. Henry faces charges of Unlawful Use of a Weapon to Commit a Felony, Unlawful Discharge of a Firearm, Terroristic Threats, Domestic Assault – 3rd Degree, and Stalking – Enhanced. He has entered a not guilty plea. The next court date on this matter is scheduled for July 9th.
Update: As of Friday, July 15th, 2018 at 3:04PM, the Nebraska VineLink offender tracking system listed Joshua D. Henry as bonded out of custody.