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Thursday, July 7, 2022

Woman accused of breaking retail manager’s nose with punch

Deja Joanna Taylor
Deja Joanna Taylor

A 26-year-old Okahumpka woman was arrested after she reportedly broke the nose of a retail manager who told her it was too late to serve her.

Deja Joanna Taylor, of 27609 Virgil Hawkins Circle, was charged Saturday with aggravated battery with bodily harm and harassing a victim or witness. The name and location of the business where the incident occurred were redacted from the Leesburg Police Department report.

An employee at the business told an officer that Taylor was arguing with her and her manager. She said the manager stepped between her and Taylor to protect her when Taylor struck the manager on the arm and face. The employee said she walked away and hid to call the police, according to the report.

The manager/victim was extremely upset and crying when she spoke with the officer. She said Taylor used to work at the business several years ago. She said Taylor became irate when told the full-service department closed 30 minutes before the business was scheduled to close, the report said.

The victim said she told Taylor she would no longer help her due to her attitude. She said she told her to leave or she would call the police. The victim said when she got her cell phone to call 911, Taylor knocked the phone out of her hand, the report said.

The victim said she continued to speak with Taylor in an effort to defuse the situation. She said Taylor grabbed her arm, and when she pulled it back, Taylor grabbed it a second time, pulling the victim towards her and punching her in the face with a closed fist. The victim said Taylor then fled the scene in a grey vehicle, according to the report.

The victim said she has a completely reconstructed nose and needed to go to the hospital to have it evaluated. She later provided proof from the hospital that her nose was broken, the report said.

The officer looked at surveillance video that showed Taylor striking the victim’s arm while she was trying to call the police, causing her to drop the phone. The video also showed Taylor grabbing the victim’s arm and punching her in the face, according to the report.

Taylor was arrested the next day and taken to the Lake County Jail, where she was released on $9,000 bond. She’s scheduled to appear in Lake County Court on July 11.

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