FRANKLIN, Ind. (Nov. 20, 2014)— Christopher Dail's greatest offense would appear to have been dating Bonita Vela's daughter.
"When all this had gone down, we had been together six or seven months," said the 19-year-old man. "She went out one night and came back with an engagement ring on her finger and dumped me on the spot and ended up getting with another guy who lived close by."
Close by was a trailer park in Franklin where Dail continued living with Vela, her six children and another man.
"I was staying with them on and off and they kicked me out and I had no place to go and was homeless out in the snow and all that and they eventually I guess felt bad for me and, so they let me move back in."
It was just a couple days after Christmas 2013, when Vela spotted Dail and her 16-year-old daughter together.
Dail said he smoked marijuana--that he assumes may have been tainted with heroin--with Vela that night and went to bed only to be awakened a few hours later and summoned to a neighbor's trailer where his ex-girlfriend's mother and another couple waited.
"Benita says ‘Sit down on the bed,’ so I figure we're talking about something important, and then she locked the door and then my suspicions got raised and she started yelling at me, and all of a sudden, Benita just smacks me as hard as she can across the face.
"She's like, 'Are you trying to make my daughter look like a whore? You're trying to make her look like a skank. I can’t believe you're doing this. You're gonna mess up her life.'
"My head started buzzing and I couldn't hear anything, and then the next thing I know, she smacks me again and just continues to smack me after she yells other words and then she starts diverging her anger into how she could kill me and get away with it.
"She said she was going to shoot me in the head and tie me to a tree and let animals eat my body," said Dail. "I was begging for my life at that point."
Dail said what followed was three hours of abuse and threats and torture and claims by Vela that she had stabbed other men before.
"All I know is I'm about to be the next victim on her list," said Dail. "When she started saying that, I knew she really meant it."
There was another man in the bedroom, Tim Potts, who blocked Dail's attempts to escape, said police.
"When Yim made the comment about, 'I have a fresh tank of gas now. We can take him anywhere you want to take him.'
“They were talking about tying me up throwing me in a trunk, shooting me in both my legs and leaving me out in the wild of anywhere Brown County or anywhere, all that type of stuff.
"Tim told me that if I talked back he was gonna shoot me.
"I'm thinking I'm about to die," said Dail, as he recalled the panic that engulfed him that morning. "The first thought that popped into my head was that I'm going to die tonight. I could see the devil in her eyes."
Vela later admitted to police that she had been smoking marijuana and could not remember everything she said.
"After a while she is like, ‘Oh, I know what I'll do,'" said Dail. "She told me to drop my drawers and she was gonna cut my penis with the knife. She said ‘Either drop your pants or I'm gonna kill you’ and I'm like ‘No, just stop’ and I was begging. I was just begging for her to stop torturing me. I had already been through so much and so she starts stabbing at my privates.
"She tried to stab it and she hit it a couple times but it didn't draw any blood so that's when she asked for a sharper object."
Dail said that's when Potts handed her a box cutter, telling Vela she had to finish up because soon he had to leave for work.
"She said, 'I'll say you molested my 3 year old,'" Dail continued, "and I just busted out in tears because I could not imagine touching that kid like that. I could not imagine touching any kid like that and when the cops got involved I told them she said that, and they went and got her and they came back to me and said, 'Yep, she said that.'''
The molest allegations were a lie.
Vela was arrested and charged with battery with bodily injury and criminal confinement. The 36-year-old woman pleaded guilty to criminal confinement. She received 10 months of home detention, six months of probation and was directed to undergo anger management control training.
Prosecutors said Vela's status as the primary caregiver for six children figured into her sentence, and the state's inability to find Dail at the time of sentencing.
"She got home detention. She gets to see her kids every day. That's not a punishment. That’s a blessing."
Dail said he still has nightmares about his attack and has post-traumatic stress disorder. Surgeons were able to repair his wounds without stitches.
The teen said he has been the victim of social media bullying after Vela was sentenced.
"Strangers on Facebook who don't know me think I molested that child, so they sit there and say I deserve what happened to me. They say, 'You just cut it. You should have cut it all the way off.' They say, 'Oh, well, you should've just killed them,' and that hurts me and breaks me down because I'm a victim being victimized for something I didn't even do."
The Johnson County Prosecutor's Office told FOX59 News that if Dail files a criminal confinement report against Potts, the Franklin man could still be charged.
Dail said he filed that report earlier this year with a detective and even picked Potts' photograph out of a line up, but he's willing to do it again to see justice done.
"It hurts me for people to think that I'm a monster when I haven't done nothing," said Dail. "Even though Benita has recanted her statement about what I supposedly did to her kid, but people are still yet continuing to say this stuff to me."