Stephanie Faye Hamman, 23
CHURCH HILL — Police have added an aggravated assault charge against the woman who allegedly drove her car into a Church Hill church on the night of March 16, and then stabbed her husband in the chest at the altar when he came to check on her.
Stephanie Faye Hamman, 23, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in Hawkins County Sessions Court Wednesday afternoon.
She was originally charged with attempted first degree murder and felony vandalism. The stab wound reportedly barely missed the heart of her husband, Steve Hamman.
On Sunday, however, Church Hill Police Department Officer Dustin Dean amended the charges to include aggravated assault.
CHPD Chief Mark Johnson said it was the attorney general's decision to add the new charge.
Johnson said the new charge may be a precaution in case Steven Hamman refuses to testify against his wife.
Assistant Attorney General Ryan Blackwell told the Times-News Tuesday the facts of the case haven't changed, and there are no new allegations.
"It's just and additional charge that we felt like fit the facts of the case," Blackwell said. "There was not an additional happening that led to her being charged with (aggravated assault)."
Hamman is currently free on bond, and according to police, has moved out of state with her husband.
At the time of the incident, however, Hamman and her husband resided in an apartment at 230 Silver Lake Road in Church Hill.
The allegations against Hamman were so outrageous they garnered national attention.
Hamman allegedly told police that God told her to drive through the front doors of Providence Church on Ordnance Drive the night of March 16. She allegedly stated that the devil was in her when she attempted to stab her husband in the heart.
She reportedly told police her husband was "worshiping NASCAR", and that the devil put bad ideas in her head.
When Steven Hamman, 24, arrived at the church and found her at the altar, police say she admittedly attempted to stab him in the heart. Mr. Hamman had been watching the NASCAR race on TV when his wife left in the car and crashed into the church.
Mrs. Hamman allegedly told police that God and the devil had spoken to her that night, and she allegedly made comments about smoking marijuana and that God said it was OK to smoke at night only "to relax."
She also stated to police, "When Steven came to check on me, I told him the devil was in me and I stabbed him in the heart. Have you heard if he is dead or not?"
Two days after the incident the Times-News contacted Steven Hamman, who came to his wife's defense, stating she "obviously had a mental breakdown" and she "belongs in a hospital and not a jail cell."
Stephanie Hamman was baptized in Claypool Hill, Va. the day of the incident, and the couple returned home around 9:30 p.m.
Steven Hamman said they hadn't been arguing and there was no drug use, although she had been acting strangely all day.
He said she hadn't been getting much sleep, she was upset and crying at times, but it wasn't over any specific issue. Her state of mind was random and unexplained, Mr. Hamman said.
Mr. Hamman said that shortly after getting home his wife started loading things into the car.
Mrs. Hamman then said she was going to take the dog out, but then Steven Hamman saw the car lights come on and that his wife was leaving in the car.
He tried to call her about seven times, but she didn't answer. Finally he got in his truck and went after her.
Steven Hamman said, "I went into the church, and she had unloaded the car and piled the stuff up at the podium where the preacher stands. I was like, 'Baby, what are you doing?' She was like, 'What do you mean?' I said, 'You just drove through the front doors of the church. We have to call the cops.' When she turned around, I noticed she had a knife in her hand. The light just caught a glimmer of it."
Mr. Hamman added, "I automatically panicked because she was already talking out of her head. I don't know if she's going to try to commit suicide. I tried to wrestle the knife out of her hand, and I ended up falling down on top of it. I jumped back, because it hurt, and it came out on its own. She was just saying, 'Jesus help me' the whole time. She might have told the cops that (the devil was in her). She didn't tell me that."
He said they're not having domestic problems, and he doesn't know what triggered his wife's breakdown.
Hamman added, "She shouldn't be charged with attempted murder. She didn't intend to stab me. It was an accident. I understand that she told the cops some pretty bad things, but obviously she was not in her right mind. She had a break with reality, and she needs help."comments powered by Disqus