DETROIT (WXYZ) — "It was like a smack on the wrist... that they didn't care about me or my children's safety at all," said the woman who made a terrifying 911 call about the bond set for her estranged husband - a man who has already spent time in prison for murder.
"It's almost, like, go ahead and just finish off the job," she said, adding that it's hard to sleep at night, fearing her estranged husband will bond out of jail, cut off his tether and come kill her and her children.
Action News is not releasing her name and will refer to her as "Angie." But many people will remember her whispering to the 911 operator in a call released by Detroit Police last week when Chief James Craig praised the officers from the department's 5th precinct for the heroic actions on Feb. 3.
Angie said her estranged husband was still living in their rental home on the city's east side at the time, but she'd been asking him to leave.
Then, five hours before she placed that call to 911, he took her downstairs and began to terrorize her, Angie told 7 Action News.
"He put the gun to my face. I couldn't even cry or show any emotions after being hit because he didn't want to wake the children up," she said.
"He hit me in the head with a gun, twice, and hit me in my face. And he said that he was going to duct tape me and I was going to be his hostage and he asked me how did I want to die," she said.
Angie was bleeding from the blows with the gun and said her husband asked if she wanted to be shot or stabbed because he was going to kill her.
This wasn't the first time Angie's life was threatened by her husband. A few years ago, she said he fired a gun inside their home. This was the first time he hit her. The other times, Angie said, her husband would be verbally, emotionally, and mentally abusive.
"I haven't tried to get away like I'm trying to get away now," she said. "It's all abuse. And if you see those signs, get away because it's not love. It eventually turns out how it did for me or even worse for other cases. Some women wind up dead."
Angie said, in the last couple years, she could tell his jealously was escalating. She asked him to move out but on Feb. 3, he demanded that they get to the bottom of their problems.
Angie said that's when the terrorizing started and it only ended when her estranged husband fell asleep.
She went upstairs, barricaded herself and her children, ages 9 and 12, in one of their bedrooms and called 911.
And when Detroit police were knocking at their door, she said her husband went upstairs and told her to come out and tell police that everything was fine because he was not going to go to jail.
"He told me I have five seconds before he starts shooting through the door," Angie said. "I didn't want him to shoot the door and harm me and my children so I opened the door. He busts in and I kind of just ran out the room and ran and jumped down the stairs and he chased me down the steps."
Angie's screams could be heard on the 911 call and on police body cams as officers were preparing to break down the front door.
When police entered, officers said Angie's estranged husband was on top of her, assaulting her.
Angie's husband was placed under arrest. Angie's two children can be heard on police body cam footage, thanking the officers over and over.
Angie was taken to the hospital where she said Detective Calvin Washington put her at ease, letting her know her husband was going to be charged. And he was.
Her estranged husband has been charged with multiple felonies, including felony assault and felon in possession. The one misdemeanor he's facing is domestic violence.
A magistrate first set his bond at $10,000 (10%) which meant he only has to post $1,000 to be released.
Judge Roberta Archer then set his bond at $20,000 (10%) which means he can be released if $2,000 is posted. If he posts bond, he also has to wear a GPS tether and has been ordered to stay away from Angie and the children.
But Angie believes that bond is too low. She fears her estranged husband will get someone to post the bond for him, cut off his tether, find her and the children, and kill them.
Her estranged husband also has prior convictions that sent him to prison. They include fleeing from police and second-degree murder.
The homicide, which was a fatal shooting, reportedly involved a confrontation at a store.
Angie now feels like she and her children are in a race against time to move to a place where her estranged husband cannot find them.
She's on Section 8 and is hoping someone has a modest three-bedroom house or apartment for rent.
"If anybody can help us, you know, just relocate. If it's in Macomb county or somewhere, anything, out of Detroit where we can just feel safe," she said.
Angie said, because of COVID, she's unable to move in with relatives and doesn't feel safe taking her children to a shelter during a pandemic.
Angie doesn't have any money for moving expenses or first and last month's rent, but a close relative of Angie's has set up a GoFundMe to help them get the money needed to move out of Detroit and to another county where her estranged husband cannot find them.
"I'm trying to help, even if it's just one woman that just thinks just calling the police won't help, it will, but you have to stick with it," said Angie, regretting not following through to prosecute her husband the time he fired shots in the house.
"You have to make sure that you're willing to do the necessary steps and not protect him because it's about you being protected," she said. "It's about your children and your family being protected, not him."
As part of the Detroit Police Victim Assistance Program, there is a social worker at every police precinct in Detroit who is available to assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. They are also there to assist family and friends of homicide victims. Their services are free and confidential, and they can assist with everything from counseling to costs for crime scene cleaning and funerals.
You can also call the Detroit Police Victim Assistance Program 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 313-833-1660.
HAVEN in Pontiac also has a crisis & support line that is available to assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault around the clock. You can reach them by calling 248-334-1274. They can assist with everything from financial resources and emergency shelter to job training.
If you are a property owner and have Section 8 housing that you think might be suitable for Angie and her two children, please contact 7 Action News reporter Kimberly Craig at firstname.lastname@example.org. Craig will forward your information to the family.