U.S. Marshals arrested on Thursday a Rome man accused of attacking his former girlfriend with a machete in Houston, Texas.
Law enforcement officials have been looking for Clifford Whatley, 30, since the attack at the Riverwood Park apartment, 525 W. 13th St., complex on the night of Aug. 22. Rome police obtained a warrant for his arrest on an aggravated battery charge the morning after the incident.
His former girlfriend was initially taken to Floyd Medical Center before being flown to Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga for an emergency surgery. She suffered injuries from slashes and fractures to her head and arm.
According to Rome Police Department reports:
Police were called to the apartment complex around 10 p.m., finding a “large blood trail” leading to the bathroom where she was sitting in a chair. She had a deep gash on her arm and a bone fracture, and was being aided by a deputy and a neighbor. A piece of her skin was missing and her skull was visible.
The woman told police while at the hospital that she and Whatley had recently broken up but he was continuing to stay in a shared apartment. Whatley became upset over her saying they were not going to get back together, she said.
“If I can’t have you, nobody can,” he reportedly told her, adding he was going to “let you see your mama,” who had recently died. He then pulled the he machete out from under his shirt and struck her head. He also struck her in the arm as she yelled for help. She beat on a neighbor’s door, unable to see from the attack, and was able to get their attention so they would call 911.
Whatley then fled the scene before police arrived.