A 32-year-old Seymour, Indiana man is accused of raping and beating his wife after forcing her to sign a “slave contract,” WFIE-TV reported on Thursday.
Kenneth Eugene Harden is accused of 38 counts of battery, criminal confinement and rape. He reportedly married the woman just over a year ago after meeting through an online personal ad. Harden allegedly described himself as a Christian during their brief courtship, only to reveal six months into the marriage that he was a “sadist.”
According to a police affadavit (PDF), police learned about the conditions Harden imposed on his wife after she called them to their residence on Aug. 30. The woman said Harden choked her with a collar she was required to wear as part of the “contract.” However, she said, Harden continually broke rules in the agreement barring abuse of her.
Authorities also found a “slave manual,” signed by the woman and Harden this past June, and paperwork granting Harden power of attorney for the woman. She told police that despite being abused for months, she could not leave him, in part because she suffered from diabetes and Harden never taught her how to operate her insulin pump.
“This is what I’m supposed to live by, and I’m tired of the abuse,” the woman was quoted as saying. “I’m tired of getting hit every day. Please, I’m scared.”
She also told officers that she would yell while Harden hit her, in hopes a neighbor would call for help.
“We could hear them fighting sometimes and we heard a lot of loud noises upstairs,” downstairs neighbor Tyler Davers was quoted as saying. “But I never thought anything of it.”
Harden is being held on $100,000 bond.
Watch a report from WHAS-TV on Harden’s arrest, as posted online, below.
[Image: “Young woman is victim of domestic abuse,” via Shutterstock]