Woman attacked calls 911, but police don't show

Posted at 12:36 PM, Mar 29, 2016

The Canton Police Department has launched an investigation after dispatchers failed to send officers to a home where a woman was badly beaten on Easter Sunday.

"It appears we dropped the ball," said Chief Bruce Lawver.

Arrest warrants have been issued for 30-year-old Juan Contero on charges of domestic violence, felonious assault and disrupting public services.

According to a police report, Contero beat his ex-girlfriend, Bobbie Alm, for an hour and a half on Sunday after entering her home on Tanner Avenue SW.

He allegedly grabbed her from the chair she was sleeping in and dragged her into a back bedroom. 

Alm told that Contero tried to strangle her and broke a chair over her body. At one point, she grabbed a screwdriver, but he overpowered her and held it to her throat, she said.

"He was trying to kill me. He was trying to kill me," Alm said.

The mother of three young children also said she can't see out of her left eye following the attack, but is hoping her sight returns.

During the beating, Alm said she called 911 from her cell phone, but Contero tossed it away from her, so she couldn't communicate with the operator.

However, 911 calls confirm that dispatchers from Stark County and Canton knew the exact location of the incident, but officers were never sent to help Alm.

"I called 911. Nobody ever showed up," Alm said.

A dispatcher called back Alm and she crawled to her phone, but she said she couldn't hear the operator because the speaker on the phone was no longer working.

Chief Lawver said officers should have been dispatched even if the dispatchers thought it was a 911 hang up call.

Alm said Contero stayed at the home for several hours, but after he left, she limped to her sister's home a few blocks away. Her sister called 911, and this time, police responded and took pictures of the Alm's injuries.

Detectives said Contero lives in Florida and may have returned there after the assault.