A Black woman whose boyfriend was arrested during a domestic dispute in a Tampa suburb last week is criticizing a police report suggesting there was a racial component to their clash, in which the man a spat in her face when she suggested they play “slave and slaver.”
Now, Ashley Edwards is fighting for her lover not to be prosecuted.
Edwards’ boyfriend, Kenneth Atkins, was arrested August 6 after the pair engaged in a war of words sparked by Atkins’ “refusal to role play,” according to an affidavit obtained by the New York Daily News. Things got heated, and at some point, Edwards asked her man “Oh, you wanna play slave and slaver?”
A police report from the incident implied their verbal dispute may have been a white and black issue.
“Ashley stated she wanted to play slave and slaver because she is African American and he is Caucasian,” the affidavit from the Manatee County Sheriff’s Department reads. “Kenneth did not wish to partake and became verbally aggressive.”
Edwards, 36, refutes the police narrative, however, saying her “slave and slaver” remark was meant as “a dominatrix thing” rather than a racial thing.
Authorities arrived to the couple’s Bradenton home earlier this month to find them in a heated verbal exchange, the Daily News reported. Edwards told the outlet she dialed 911 because Atkins “was acting crazy and I didn’t want anything to with it.”
At that point, the Florida woman, who wasn’t injured in the incident, said she just wanted her boyfriend out of their apartment. The cops ultimately arrested Atkins on a simple battery charge despite his girlfriend’s requests not to book him.
Edwards said both she and Atkins spoke with officers, who she says grossly exaggerated her “slave and slaver” remark. In their report, police also said Atkins “spat in Ashley’s face,” a statement the woman says shouldn’t be taken literally.
“He spit towards me, but didn’t do anything to me,” Edwards told the Daily News in an interview. “If he did that I would have pressed charges.”
Edwards admitted to getting physical with Atkins in the past, but said he’s never hit back and that she doesn’t want to see yet another charge on his already lengthy criminal record. According to The Smoking Gun, Atkins’ rap sheet includes convictions for burglary, grand theft, battery and narcotics possession, among other offenses.
“He shouldn’t have been arrested,” Edward’s said of the most recent incident involving her boyfriend.
Atkins’ arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 9.