A Texas man who met a woman on the dating app Bumble on Christmas Eve kidnapped, beat and tortured her for five days after she denied his sexual advances, authorities said.
Zachary Kent Mills, 21, of Spring, was arrested and charged with felony aggravated kidnapping after the woman escaped Thursday from her apartment, where she endured days of being beaten by Mills, hit with a screwdriver and he starved her to death, according to indictments in court. Records filed in Harris County District Court.
Mills abducted the woman, identified only as JW, on Dec. 24 after he picked her up and brought her to his apartment, authorities said. The two had begun a romantic relationship after they met on the dating app, according to a probable cause statement. At Mills’ apartment, he immediately tried to have sex with the woman, who denied his advances, according to court records.
“He immediately began physically assaulting her and would not let her leave the residence,” the probable cause statement said. The woman told authorities that when Mills got tired of hitting her with a «clenched fist,» she would «take a screwdriver and hit her with the handle.»
During her five days in captivity, Mills did not provide her with food or water, according to the probable cause statement.
He was able to escape from the apartment when Mills left to visit his father. When the woman was interviewed by authorities, her injuries included «severe bruising to both eyes, bite marks and cuts to both her throat and nose, and severe bruising» over most of her body, according to statement of probable cause.
Other court records related to the case show Mills was arrested Friday and jailed Saturday.
Records show he was released on $50,000 bond Monday. Court records also show that prosecutors requested $100,000 bail, while his defense requested $20,000 bail.
Mills’ attorney, Chris Denuna, said Wednesday that his client has no criminal record and is not considered a flight risk.
Denuna said the accusations are «egregious» but the judicial system has to act. Denuna said he is waiting for the Harris County District Attorney’s Office to turn over potential evidence.
The stipulations imposed by the court on Mills include the use of a GPS monitor, 24-hour house arrest and an order to stay away from the alleged victim, according to records and Denuna.
“We plead not guilty,” Denuna said. “It is important that the process … be carried out before we find these accusations credible or not. That is the goal of due process and the presumption of innocence.”
A spokesman for the district attorney’s office declined to comment Wednesday, but confirmed that the office requested $100,000 bail.
NBC News could not immediately reach a representative for Bumble for comment.
In a statement to KPRC of Houston, NBC affiliateBumble said: «We are shocked and saddened to learn of this horrific crime. We blocked this member as soon as we found out about this situation and in accordance with our Community Guidelines. We also have a dedicated law enforcement team available to respond to any law enforcement requests as needed.»
Donna Mendell contributed.