Trying to support a survivor of domestic abuse but don’t know how? Here are a few tips
A day after their wedding anniversary last month, the wife of Texas celebrity chef Grady Spears filed for divorce.
Wendy Hutchison Mann-Spears claimed to have been assaulted by him in July at their home, and filed a temporary protective order against Spears just days before filing for divorce on Sept. 10.
Mann-Spears filed because of “discord or conflict of personalities” that has destroyed the marriage. She also alleged Spears was “guilty of cruel treatment toward” his wife, according to Tarrant County court documents.
The couple were married on Sept. 9, 2015, and they have no children.
James V. Jay of Fort Worth, Mann-Spears’ attorney, declined to comment Tuesday.
Spears’ wife was requesting her name be changed to Wendy Hutchinson Mann, according to court documents.
Jim Lane of Fort Worth, Grady Spears’ attorney, was in court Tuesday and could not be reached.
Mann-Spears obtained a temporary protective order against him on Sept. 7 after he told her “there will be a funeral,” implying he was going to kill her, during an argument in early September, according to an affidavit.
“I don’t believe any of the allegations against him,” Spears’ ex-wife, Jennifer Challis of Hurst, told the Star-Telegram last month. Challis was married to Spears for 10 years before they divorced in 2010, and she has known him for 18 years.
“He never slapped me or hit me in the 10 years we were together. Not once,” she said.
Mann-Spears had blamed medications for her husband’s behavior following his arrest in July on a domestic assault complaint.
She wrote in a Facebook post that her husband “does not condone violence. He’s been on medication but been so busy lately he’s not been taking it the way he should have been.”
But she said in the affidavit, obtained by the Star-Telegram last month, that her husband has been mentally and physically abusing her for about a year on almost a daily basis. The affidavit was filed in September as part of an application for a protective order.
Police have been called to their home several times recently, the affidavit stated.
The affidavit listed several incidents of violence:
▪ She was punched in the face on Jan. 25 while they argued.
▪ In March, she was hit with his belt, leaving cuts and bruises.
▪ On Sept. 5, as they argued, Spears told her “that there will be a funeral with two hearse vehicles implying that he was going to kill her,” according to the affidavit.
Spears recently co-founded Horseshoe Hill Cafe in the Stockyards along with other partners. He was the original chef at Reata, owned by the Micallef family, with locations in downtown Fort Worth and Alpine. He left in 2000 and has owned or managed a string of other restaurants in Fort Worth and across Texas. He also has written several cookbooks.
A few days after his arrest in July, the Food Hall at Crockett Row in the West 7th shopping area dropped its plans for a Spears restaurant and cut ties with him, according to a spokesman.