TAMPA — A 22-year-old man wielded a kitchen knife at his pregnant girlfriend and punched her in the face, Hillsborough County deputies say. But he came out worse in the attack.
His girlfriend bit off the tip of his finger in self-defense.
Reginald Gefferie was charged with aggravated battery on a pregnant female and false imprisonment. He — and the tip of his finger — were taken to Tampa General Hospital. Doctors could not reattach the finger tip, said sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter.
Gefferie was held in jail on $25,000 bail.
Deputies say Gefferie and girlfriend Junie Dieujuste, also 22, got into an argument Monday evening in the apartment in northern Hillsborough. Gefferie armed himself with a knife, pointed it at Dieujuste and refused to allow her to leave the bathroom by blocking the doorway with his body. He pushed her and punched her in the face with a closed hand.
According to authorities, Dieujuste fought back in self-defense, and the fight continued to the bedroom. He put a small dresser in front of the closed bedroom door, refusing to let her leave. He grabbed her by the neck, pushing her up against the wall and punching her in the face.
Then she bit off the tip of the middle finger on his right hand, investigators said. She sustained a cut to her forehead, as well as bruises.
The pair have been together for five years and have a child.
Records show Gefferie got out of prison in February for a 2011 robbery conviction. He has been arrested 11 times in Florida on charges including marijuana possession and loitering.
Times researcher John Martin contributed to this report. Jodie Tillman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 226-3374.