CALLAHAN, Fla. -- A local pastor is speaking out for the first time since his arrest on Dec. 9 in a domestic battery case.
"My heart is heavy. I'm not angry at my daughter," said Elmer Holbrooks.
Holbrooks said he's embarrassed. He was cuffed right outside of his Nassau County church and thrown in jail after a fight with his 19-year-old daughter.
Holbrooks said she was using his backhoe and became frustrated with it.
"She throwed it in reverse turned the wheels and throwed it in forward, and full steam ahead, slammed on the brakes," he said. "I popped her on her right shoulder once, maybe twice. I don't think it was the second time until she looked at me with a hateful attitude like 'what did you do' and I popped her again and said 'don't disrespect your dad'," said Holbrooks.
His daughter Charity called police, and according to the report, she told deputies she was slapped in the face.
Action News called Charity to get her side of the story, but she swore at our reporter and hung up. Holbrooks said the damage to his reputation is done and he's apologized to his congregation at The Anchor Church.
"We have often stated that 'I'll go to jail for what I believe in' as far as discipline and I guess this is one of those cases where you get it. The public likes it and I have to suffer with it now," said Holbrooks.
The pastor said he was told he won't lose his congregation or his standing with the church. He is facing a misdemeanor charge and has an arraignment scheduled for Dec. 30.