July 26, 2014

Elyria
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Bigamist released from jail

ELYRIA — James Bouyer doesn’t have three wives. He has two, according to court officials.

Bouyer

Elyria police couldn’t find any evidence to support allegations that Bouyer, whom county Domestic Relations Judge David Berta ordered jailed on contempt charges Tuesday after learning he had at least two wives, had a third wife.

Bouyer, 62, denied during a hearing Tuesday that he had been married to a Tammy Bouyer before his 1966 marriage to Annie Bouyer, whom he is seeking to divorce. But Bouyer did admit that he had married another woman, Doris Diggs, on Sept. 15 in Newport News, Va.

“There’s a Tammy, but she’s not married to this James,” said James Paterson, one of Berta’s magistrates.
James Gemelas, Bouyer’s attorney, said his client was released from the county jail Wednesday after Elyria police reported that it didn’t appear that Bouyer had ever been married to Tammy, an allegation raised by Deborah Williams, another woman Bouyer had once dated.

Williams had written a letter to Berta saying she had been Bouyer’s “special friend” for eight years and that she had uncovered evidence that he had been married before Annie Bouyer.

Gemelas said Williams was upset that Bouyer was marrying another woman.

“The old saying, ‘Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,’ absolutely rings true in this case,” Gemelas said.

Bouyer said Tuesday that he had been told by an attorney that he could marry Diggs as long as he had filed for a divorce, even if it hadn’t been granted. But on his Virginia marriage license, he claimed that Annie Bouyer, from whom he had been separated for 17 years, was dead.

“It seems to me like he got some bad advice,” Gemelas said. “He was under the impression, mistaken obviously, that if he filed for divorce he was OK to get remarried.”

Paterson said the uncontested divorce that Bouyer had requested would likely be granted at a hearing set for December. After that, he could have to face bigamy charges in Virginia — which is both a misdemeanor and a felony in that state.

He will not face bigamy charges in Ohio, as the marriage to Diggs occurred in Virginia.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or bdicken@chroniclet.com.