Local USVI News

Man Enters Home of Ex-Girlfriend Through Kitchen Window, Confronts Her New Boyfriend Over Child Abuse Allegations

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ST. CROIX — A man appeared before a V.I. Superior Court judge Monday to face multiple charges after allegedly entering his child’s mother’s home and attacking the mother’s new boyfriend over child abuse allegations.

Jelani Ferdinand was arrested and charged on December 1 with first-degree burglary, third-degree assault, aggravated assault and battery, carrying or using a dangerous weapon during a crime of violence, and destruction of property. He was also charged with contempt of court as an act of domestic violence.

Ferdinand’s arrest follows a report of a burglary on November 29 at one of the units in the Louis E. Brown Apartment Buildings.

According to the probable cause fact sheet, when police made contact with the victim, an adult male, he told police that about ten minutes before 10:00 a.m. on November 29, he was sitting on the living room couch at his girlfriend’s apartment when he heard someone knocking on the front door. The man said he was the only person in the apartment at the time as his girlfriend was at the hospital dealing with an issue and her child was at school. The man stated that when he went to the front door to check who it was, he saw a man wearing a black hoodie walking away from the door. About a minute later while the victim was near the front door, he heard someone knocking on the northern bedroom window. He said he yelled out and someone replied, and he recognized the person’s voice as that of Jelani Ferdinand, his girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend and the father of her child.

According to the victim, Ferdinand had already propped open the window with a pocketknife, trying to enter the bedroom. Ferdinand had accused the victim of abusing his child as well as the victim’s own child. The victim told Ferdinand to go by the front door so they could talk. Before leaving the bedroom, the victim turned around and locked all the windows.

As he proceeded to call 911, he heard a noise coming from the kitchen window. Realizing that it was Ferdinand who was coming through the kitchen window, the victim told the 911 dispatcher to send police to the residence as soon as possible because Ferdinand was entering the apartment. Ferdinand jumped through the kitchen window and confronted the victim about his allegations of child abuse.

Still armed with the pocketknife, Ferdinand then told the victim, “Why you’re calling the police for? Talk to me like a man.”

According to court documents, at that point Ferdinand grabbed the victim’s iPhone which was recording the confrontation and threw it on the floor. The two men began grabbing and pushing each other inside the apartment. Because Ferdinand was armed with a knife, the victim said he was cautious and unlocked and opened the front door, and the two of them exited the apartment. While they were outside, Ferdinand threatened to kill the victim and yelled at him to stay away from his child. The victim then picked up a huge stone to defend himself while Ferdinand continued to scream at him and dared him to throw the stone. Ferdinand then left the area in a blue Toyota Yaris.

According to court documents, the victim had only been residing at his girlfriend’s residence for no more than eight weeks. Ferdinand did not have any permission to be at the apartment as there was a restraining order against him. The victim showed police the restraining order which was in effect for two years beginning in April 2021.

The victim sustained a laceration to his right index finger and an abrasion to his left arm as a result of the incident, however he declined medical assistance. A window curtain drape for the kitchen window was damaged and there were disposable plates on the kitchen floor. The window screens on the kitchen and northern bedroom windows were on the ground outside the apartment on the grass. The victim’s phone sustained a crack across the screen.

On December 1 Ferdinand turned himself in and was placed under arrest.

In court on Monday, a judge ruled that Ferdinand would be released upon posting of $1,500 of the $50,000 bail amount, with the remainder to be posted as an unsecured bond.

Ferdinand would then be released to a third-party custodian and is barred from leaving St. Croix without the court’s written permission. The suspect was ordered to surrender is passport and was placed on a 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. curfew. He must also report to the Office of Probation every Tuesday, and was ordered to have no direct or indirect contact with the victim or any witnesses in the matter. Ferdinand was further barred from entering the housing complex where the incident took place.

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