Case against man charged with assaulting his roommate sent to Butler County grand jury

A former homeless man, who was taken in by a Middletown woman, had his assault case bound over to a Butler County grand jury Monday afternoon in Middletown Municipal Court.

Joshua Speaks, 32, was charged with felonious assault after he allegedly attacked his roommate on Aug. 14 in her Central Avenue residence.

Judge James Sherron amended Speaks’ bond from $100,000 to $100,000 with 10 percent pending his pretrial release, according to court records. He is represented by Chris Atkins.

Sarah Risner, a pet groomer and owner of the Pink Poodle Boutique in downtown Middletown, was severely beaten during the attack, according to Middletown police.

She suffered a crushed orbital eye socket and a brain bleed, Detective Brook McDonald said in the court complaint. Detectives talked to her briefly after the alleged assault.

Risner was transported to Atrium Medical Center in Middletown, then to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton. She no longer is a patient there, according to hospital officials.

On Aug. 14, as a Middletown police officer was on patrol about 3:10 p.m. the officer saw a man leave a house in the 3800 block of Central Avenue. As the officer passed, the man called out “hey,” and he stopped.

Risner, 42, was found upstairs semi-conscious with facial injuries. McDonald said Risner said she was beaten with an object and used a knife to protect herself. Speaks was not injured, according to police.

Maj. Scott Reeve said Risner took Speaks in as a favor for a friend. When she wanted him to leave, he allegedly became upset and got physical, police said.

About the Authors