PONCE DE LEON — A 30-year-old man was arrested for beating his girlfriend after she woke him up.

A nurse at Healthmark Hospital called the Walton County Sheriff’s Office to report a battered woman. The nurse told officers the alleged suspect left the hospital and was possibly headed to Walmart to pick up medicine.

The woman told deputies in the ER room that a man – whom she’s lived with for three years – beat her and it was not the first time. She said she woke up in the morning and was leaving for work. The man was asleep, so she woke him up to let him know she was leaving.

The man was angry and started yelling at her, then hit her in the face with an open hand. He told the woman if she didn’t stop screaming, he was going to “punch her in the stomach so she couldn’t breathe.”

He then choked the woman by grabbing her neck with both hands until she felt like she would pass out. Then he pushed her against the floor by her chest.