SKOWHEGAN — A man accused of forcing a woman to have sex with him accepted an agreement to plead guilty to lesser charges on Wednesday.

The man, Robert Vicino, 55, was sentenced to two years in prison after he pleaded guilty in Somerset County Superior Court to three felony charges: violating a protection order with a dangerous weapon, assault and criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon.

The remaining two charges of gross sexual assault and obstructing the report of a crime or injury were dismissed.

Various court papers list him as being from Lewiston, Auburn and as a transient in Augusta.

Assistant District Attorney Brent Davis said that after an extensive investigation and consulting with the victim, “the state didn’t feel it could prove count one, the gross sexual assault.”

Skowhegan police did an outstanding job, he said, and he is satisfied with the sentence. “It was a very serious assault, and I think the sentence certainly reflects that.”

Defense attorney John Alsop said Vicino has always said he did not commit the alleged sex offense. Without evidence “the district attorney, to his credit, recognized that and dropped the charge.”

The convictions stem from an incident in a woman’s Skowhegan apartment the morning of June 17. At the time, Vicino was prohibited by a five-year protection order from contacting her.

The woman told police he threatened her with a flip-up knife and punched her twice in the face while forcing her to have intercourse, according to a court affidavit. She said Vicino dragged her around by her hair, broke her cellphone and squeezed her neck until she was dizzy.

Documents do not indicate how they knew one another.

Judge John Nivison sentenced Vicino to five years in prison, all but two years suspended, plus two years of probation. He is required to attend a batterer’s intervention program and to have no contact with the victim.

Erin Rhoda — 612-2368

[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.