Criminal Charges Dropped Against Sebastian Man for Kidnapping, Attempted Murder

Steven Artis
Steven Artis

According to Indian River County court records, charges of kidnapping and attempted 2nd-degree murder, and aggravated battery were dropped against 40-year-old Steven Wayne Artis of Sebastian.

Artis said that he is innocent of the charges, and the only thing that happened that night was a verbal argument between him and his now ex-girlfriend.

“It’s actually quite frightening that the police will take a statement from someone who is so intoxicated they can barely stand straight and charge them with something as serious as attempted murder and kidnapping,” Artis told Sebastian Daily.

During the argument, the ex-girlfriend ran outside and dialed 911, then hung up when police dispatched answered. When police arrived, she said she hung up on purpose because she knew the police would respond to her location.

The girlfriend told officers that Artis held a knife to her throat. When police asked where the knife was, she pointed to a drawer where several kitchen knives were kept.

Artis was arrested on Dec. 21, 2020, and spent Christmas and New Years’ in the county jail. He was released on Jan. 2, 2021.

The ex-girlfriend requested that the prosecutor drop the kidnapping, attempted murder, and aggravated battery charges, and they agreed.

Artis said he had to spend his entire savings to prove his innocence.

DISCLAIMER: Arrests and mugshots were made public by complaint affidavits, arrest affidavits, and police reports. All persons arrested are innocent until proven guilty.

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About Andy Hodges
Andy Hodges was born in Annapolis, Maryland and raised in Jupiter, Florida. Andy has been a radio & TV personality since the 1980s. He has worked for WLIZ, WFLX-FOX 29, WIRK, WIXI, WKSY, WRMF, and WJNO to name a few. After spending 7 years in Atlanta, Georgia during the 1990s, Andy returned to Florida and settled in the small town of Sebastian in 2000. In 2005, he returned to the broadcasting news sector and eventually joined our news team in 2016 as editor in chief. Andy's family has lived in Sebastian for more than 45 years.