WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - When Commissioner Brian Berger didn't show up for court Friday morning to a hearing related to a domestic violence protective order, the move didn't just land him in handcuffs -- it thrust his ex-fiancée, Heather Blaylock, back into the public eye.
Blaylock says she wasn't surprised at Berger's actions Friday, but she was concerned.
"I was actually worried, at a point, because his behavior has been unpredictable," she said. "I was almost scared…'What if he's at home hurting himself?'"
She says she was relieved when deputies brought him into the courtroom, and she's glad that he may be on the road to getting the help he need now that a mental evaluation has been ordered by a judge.
"I knew he wouldn't get help on his own unless he was forced to get help," said Blaylock. "So, I'm glad that the judge made it so that he needs to be evaluated."
Blaylock says she still cares about Berger; although, she says he's a different person from the man she dated for two and half years.
"People don't understand -- he's not the same person he used to be," she explained. "He's totally different now. The person he used to be is the one I care about, and the one I worry about."
She says the stress of becoming a commissioner hurt his health, and that the role changed him, even affecting his sleeping habits.
Blaylock has some theories of her own when it comes to what triggers some of Berger's behaviors.
"I have sometimes questioned if he has Asperger's syndrome," she said. "I studied abnormal psychology when I was in school. It's a mild form of autism. The symptoms of it are personality traits."
Blaylock says Berger displays particular ticks, like his eyes darting around, social awkwardness and a knack for talking in long rants, and she considers those behaviors to be possible symptoms.
Now, she's hoping Berger will get the help that she says he needs - and she's looking forward to moving on with her life.