After years of dating, Tascha married Gerald Ray Johnson in 2000. At first, she says they had what most people would call a "storybook romance."
"In the beginning he was very outgoing, very personable, handsome," she says. "He was all of those things I think that someone looks for in a man. Then, everything just started slowly changing."
Less than a year into their marriage, Tascha says Gerald began alienating her from her family and lashing out verbally. Despite the signs, she says she never thought she was being abused. "He had never hit me," she says.
That all changed on the night of November 10, 2001. On the way home from a concert, Tascha says Gerald flew into a jealous rage and began beating her in the car. "He doubled up his fist and just reached into the back of the seat and punched me with his fist," she says. "I was kicking and screaming and trying to get out of the car, and he was holding me down."
During the attack, Tascha says she told her husband she was leaving him, which only made the situation worse. "I had told myself throughout my life that when a man hits me, that's it. That's the breaking point," she says. "Unfortunately, that was a little too late."
When they arrived home, she says Gerald grabbed her head and slammed her into the ground. This was just the beginning of a night of violence that nearly ended Tascha's life.