Woman given recognition for surviving brutal attack

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After her ex-boyfriend tried to attack her, a Topeka woman had to learn to write, talk and walk again, and undergo multiple surgeries to reconstruct her face crushed from the brutal attack.

Now Third Judicial District Attorney Mike Kagay is recognizing Stacey Miner for her bravery.

“Every beating was worse, every fight was worse, until literally he tried to kill me,” Miner said.  

That’s because her ex-boyfriend and father of her children brutally attacked her, nearly killing her on impact. 

“He was strangling me unconscious and then I woke up in the hospital,” Miner said.  

She needed facial reconstruction surgery. Now half of her face is made of metal. 

“I had his shoe prints on my face,” said Miner. 

With permanent brain damage, she’s considered disabled and can’t get a job. 

“I’m not reliable. I have, spells where I’ll just get dizzy and blackout, and you know, can’t walk, I just lose all of my motor functions,” Miner said.  

District Attorney Mike Kagay prosecuted her attacker, Joseph Hughes. He said she needed a walker just to get up to the witness stand to testify. 

“I remember you know kind of holding her arm and trying to help her as she walked up to the witness stand,” said Kagay. “It was a really compelling case, in the face of everything she endured to get up to the stand and tell her story was incredibly powerful and very moving.” 

He awarded her with a challenge coin usually reserved for law enforcement and first responders. For the first time, Kagay gave the coin to a victim.

“There’s really nobody, really no one that deserves that kind of recognition more than survivors, more than the victims themselves that go through that whole process,” Kagay said.  

As Miner tries to move past the attack four years ago, she’s thankful the justice system is recognizing her fight.

“It’s so easy to forget where I, how far I’ve came,” Miner said. 

The man who tried to kill Miner will spend at least five more years in prison.

If you’re dealing with a similar situation, Miner recommends reaching out to groups like the YWCA. 

The YWCA has a local toll-free 24-hour helpline. Their number is 1-888-822-2983. If you are not located in Shawnee, Jackson, or Wabaunsee counties, call the following national hotlines:

National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673

National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888

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