After enjoying what appeared to be a whirlwind romance shared on social media, Damion Orlando Archat, the husband of North Lauderdale Commissioner Regina Martin, who also serves as senior pastor at Embassy Church of South Florida, was arrested Monday on several counts of battery charges, including domestic battery by strangulation and resisting an officer.
Arrest records acquired by The Christian Post from the Broward Sheriff's Office Friday show that Archat, 39, was arrested at about 9:30 p.m. Monday at a location within the jurisdictional limits of North Lauderdale. Officers on the scene also noted that there were indications that Archat, who is also a well-known pastor, was under the influence of alcohol.
Details on Archat’s victim(s) were redacted from the report under Marsy’s Law, but it noted that Archat allegedly “intentionally touched and struck” a female victim “against their will.” He allegedly pushed her on her left shoulder, causing her to fall to the floor, then proceeded to choke her.
“Damion then got on top of [redacted] and with both hands, grabbed [redacted’s] throat and proceeded to choke her, causing her airway to be obstructed until [redacted] almost passed out. Damion also struck [redacted] in an unknown area of her body while [redacted] was inside the driver’s side of [redacted’s] vehicle,” the report said.
“Damion went to the left rear passenger side door, opened it, and reached inside the vehicle, grabbed [redacted’s] shirt, who was on the rear right passenger side of the vehicle, violently pulled [redacted] out of the vehicle, and threw her to the floor. Damion intentionally caused bodily harm to [redacted],” Officer Vincent Cornelius wrote.
When officers tried to arrest Archat, he reportedly resisted, forcing officers to tackle him to the ground.
The legal definition of domestic battery is “any willful and unlawful touching, that is harmful or offensive and is committed against an intimate partner.” It was unclear Friday if Martin was the victim in the attack, but one image posted on Facebook shows her with a battered face.
Embassy Church of South Florida did not immediately respond to a request for comment from CP on Friday. In a statement to NBC 6, the city manager for North Lauderdale said: “Please be advised that the city has no comment as it is a private matter and we are not in contact with Ms. Martin.”
Martin, who was sworn into her position as commissioner of North Lauderdale in December 2020, is the first African American Caribbean woman to be elected to that office. She is also founder and operator of Embassy College and The Embassy Academy, a K-12 private school, according to the North Lauderdale website.
A Facebook Live video shows that she agreed to marry Archat after he proposed to her on July 5, 2020. She is described on the North Lauderdale website as a “newlywed” who is was raising five daughters with Archat.
Archat, who was previously married, is no stranger to marital issues. A 2019 report alleged he was involved in an adulterous affair with Martin while he was married to another woman.
Just weeks ago, however, on July 27, he posted on Instagram that he was celebrating his one-year anniversary with Martin in prayer.
He also copiously documented his whirlwind romance with Martin on his Instagram page, promising in the lyrics of a song just over a year ago that he would be the man of her dreams.
“I heard it in songs wondering could it really be that someone could love me unconditionally. Something more than love more like my destiny, with flaws and all she's still perfect for me so I'll be the man that give you comfort and provide security,” he wrote in a post attached to a clip of a song he said he wrote just for Martin. “I'll be the man that loves you always, I'll be the man that brings you peace. I'll fall in love with you just two times when you're awake and when you're asleep so for the rest of your life. I'll be the man of your dreams.”