CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The ex-girlfriend of Daunte Johnson is telling her story after she said she survived years of abuse.
Johnson is accused of killing South Carolina mom Sharee Bradley and her 5-year-old daughter Navaeh Adams earlier this week. Sumter, SC police are still searching for the child’s body.
Johnson has ties to the Charlotte area and, according to an ex-girlfriend, he lived here for approximately three years. Latasha Smith’s name is listed in court records connected to Johnson’s name after she filed a protective order against him. She said they dated for three years and he abused her constantly.
“He was very abusive. He was abusive mentally, emotionally and physically,” Smith said.
It’s been several years since Smith has seen Johnson but she said the memory of the abuse is something she will never forget.
“Defendant also physically assaulted plaintiff on December 19, 2017 by kicking her in the face with a steel toe boot,” Smith said while reading from court documents against her then-boyfriend.
Smith said while dating Johnson the abuse was constant, saying he would hit her if she looked at someone for too long or said something and he thought she was lying. So when her mom told her that he was arrested in connection to a homicide, she wasn’t shocked.
“I wasn’t surprised at all, like I said I believed it and I know he was capable of it," she said.
Smith and Johnson have a 2-year-old child together. But when she says DSS threatened to take her son away because of the abuse, she finally filed a restraining order against Johnson.
“I actually had to get the strength to walk away from him,” she said. “It was hard, I loved him and I cared about him and I wanted him to be a father but after I realized that’s something he did not want, I had to leave.”
Smith said she believed he was capable of more violence and even tried to reach out to his family members to try and get him help. But said she eventually left the relationship because she had to think of her son first.
“I wish somebody would have listened a long time ago and got him help so nobody would have ended up have to be murdered," she said. “They still could be alive instead of murdered.”
According to court documents, Johnson was never arrested or charged with assault against Smith but she did have a protective order against him for alleged previous assaults. Johnson was arrested twice in 2015 and 2016 for assault on female charges for allegedly abusing a previous girlfriend.
He was never convicted because the victim did not make their court appearance to testify against him.