published Friday, June 13th, 2014

Woman charged after man beaten

A gathering of homeless people drinking alcohol under the Veterans Bridge turned bloody early Wednesday morning and a 21-year-old woman faces attempted first-degree murder charges as a result.

A witness told police that Ciera Hix repeatedly punched Jeff Vance on the face until he was unconscious and then grabbed his legs and dragged him into the Tennessee River, according to an arrest affidavit.

The witness said Hix, whose birthday was Tuesday, then put her hands around Vance's throat, choking him and submerging his head under water for 10 to 15 seconds.

At that point, the witness told police, he pushed Hix away, pulling Vance out of the water and performing CPR on him. The witness said Vance began coughing up blood.

After about an hour, the witness said Hix began assaulting Vance again and threw his backpack into the river.

Police were dispatched to the area at 1:21 a.m. to the report of a bleeding man standing in the middle of Frazier Avenue. Officers located Vance and noticed obvious signs of head trauma and that he was soaking wet.

Vance was taken to Erlanger hospital. Police told Hix that she was under arrest. She admitted to officers that she assaulted Vance and threw him in the water, authorities said.

The affidavit says she then "became irate and started hitting her head on the window of the police car."

Hix will appear in court Thursday. Records do not indicate that she has a local criminal history.

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