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A Waldorf man was sentenced to 30 years in prison Thursday for beating and sexually assaulting his girlfriend inside her Jessup home last March.

Robert Nathaniel Jones, 46, was convicted of sexual offense and second-degree assault charges following a three-day trial in September, according to Wayne Kirwan, spokesman for the Howard County State's Attorney's Office. At the time of the attack, Jones was on probation following a first-degree assault of his then-wife in 2007.

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Kirwan said police were called to the home of Jones' girlfriend in Jessup on March 18, where they found the 45-year-old woman crying on the kitchen floor. Police saw that Jones, who was standing over his girlfriend, was drunk, and arrested him after seeing the woman's injuries, including cuts on her lip and elbow and swelling around her nose.

Kirwan said she told police that Jones knocked her to the ground, hit her multiple times with the back of a chair and strangled her. Following Jones' arrest, she also told officers that he sexually assaulted her with an object before beating her in the kitchen. The woman went to Howard County General Hospital the next day for treatment, where an examination confirmed sexual assault.

Ritter also informed the court on Thursday that Jones told his girlfriend not to testify against him during the September trial, Kirwan said. A friend of Jones then called her the night before Jones' sentencing, telling her to "do whatever" to make sure Jones would not spend two decades in prison.

The woman's impact testimony revealed she ""lost all sense of normalcy and security" with Jones, feeling "fear and survival." Kirwan said Bernhardt described Jones' assaults as ways "to further debase and demean this woman, to further your control, to break her down to absolutely nothing — which makes it even more horrendous… [and] makes you even more dangerous."

Jones was sentenced to 20 years in prison for sex offense and an additional 10-year consecutive term for second-degree assault.



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