A young Indianapolis woman is lucky to be able to speak today following a harrowing ordeal that involved, among other heinous acts, an attempt to literally tear out her tongue.
Speaking through the pain inflicted by her now-jailed ex-boyfriend, 26-year-old Ryan Cameron, a bandaged and bruised Carleigh Hager, 25, shared with FOX 59 how a day of celebrating love at a friend’s wedding on Saturday turned into anything but love later that evening.
Hager explained that after a long day at the ceremony, she wanted to go home and some rest. Ryan, on the other hand, chose to keep the fun times going by inviting a group of his friends back to the house he shared with Carleigh. While there, his buddies seemed to side with his exhausted girlfriend, which, in turn, sent Ryan into a drunken rage.
— Artarius Media (@ArtariusMedia) October 26, 2016
“He locked his friends outside of our house, ran [into our bedroom] and locked us [inside],” she stated from her hospital room, adding that he also bit off a part of her ear and beat her until she passed out from his assault.
At some point during her unconsciousness, Hager, who works as a nursing assistant, says that Cameron grabbed hold of her tongue, which was inside of her mouth, and vigorously pulled, which partially detached it from her throat.
“…he tried to rip my tongue out with my bare fingers from here all the way up to here and he succeeded, half way. He got the right side halfway. He got it halfway ripped out.”
Ryan also allegedly bit Hager all over her body and threw her into a door frame in their residence, an act that was confirmed by Eric Splichal, Carleigh’s brother-in-law, who was also among the group of friends who accompanied the pair to the wedding earlier that day.
“[When] I woke up,” she tearfully continued, “Ryan was sitting next to me [as if] he thought I was dead.”
— FOX59 News (@FOX59) October 26, 2016
Luckily, Cameron’s friends immediately called 911, who reached the scene in minutes and quickly transported Carleigh to a nearby hospital. Ryan, meanwhile, was cuffed and shuffled off to the Marion County Jail, where he currently awaits sentencing on battery and strangulation charges.
Catherine O’Connor, the CEO of The Julian Center, an organization that supports victims of domestic and sexual violence, says that while Hager’s agony at the hands of Cameron was rough, it could’ve been much worse had her friends not stepped in to help.
“Those people intervened,” Ms. O’Connor explained to FOX 59. “They did what they could to stop the situation and they called the police to make sure something happened to protect this victim and that’s exactly what should happen.”
Friends & family at court in support of Carleigh Hager, beaten, allegedly at hands of boyfriend Ryan Cameron. pic.twitter.com/uFDIUrZn0Q
— Jeremy Brilliant (@JeremyWTHR) October 26, 2016
Sitting by her side as she begins her recovery, Carleigh’s mom, Amy Ballard, admits that she while never witnessed any warning signs regarding Cameron’s violent nature, she has complete faith that her daughter’s inner strength will aid in her healing, both physically and emotionally.
“It’s going to be a long road to recovery,” Ballard admitted, “but she is a strong woman from strong stock and we will overcome. She’s such a beautiful person inside and out. Her strength and beauty is inside and the scars will heal and in time, so will her heart.”
As for the physical sense, doctors say that Hager, along with the stitches that now hold her tongue in place, also incurred bruises all over her body, as well as a “quarter-sized opening” on her head from being dragged through the home she once shared with Cameron. A GoFundMe page has been created to assist the befallen woman with hospital expenses and, as of this posting, has surpassed more than half of its $20,000 goal.
Hear Carleigh Hager’s story in her own words below. Please be advised that the following video might be disturbing for some Inquisitr readers. Cameron is set for his first court appearance this Wednesday, according to USA Today.
[Featured Image by KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock]