AUGUSTA — Jacob Walmer told Justice Robert Mullen on Thursday that he was a two-tour combat veteran who settled in Maine because he thought it was a peaceful place to raise a family.

“I try and do something good for somebody, and I get set up,” Walmer said. “That night I had to fight for my life.”

Walmer, now 28, described being the victim of a baseball bat attack on May 25, 2014, telling the judge that hospital personnel told him he was lucky he had not bled to death.

Police reports indicate he had met a woman at a Water Street bar and was attacked and robbed of his wallet outside her Augusta apartment door after walking her home.

Walmer spoke at the sentencing hearing for Corey J. Dionne, 26, of Augusta, who was convicted of wielding the bat.

“In my opinion, (he’s) getting off pretty easily,” Walmer said to the judge before looking toward the defendant and saying, “You’re not the only one serving time; I’m serving time.” Walmer talked of having a brain injury as well as post-traumatic stress disorder.

Dionne had pleaded no contest to the aggravated assault charge last week during a hearing at the Capital Judicial Center, and Justice Michaela Murphy automatically convicted him of that offense. The sentencing was delayed until Walmer, the victim, could be in court to speak to the judge. Murphy had indicated any judge could do the sentencing, and Mullen was available on Thursday.

Dionne also had pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated trafficking in heroin that occurred on May 25, 2015, in Augusta and agreed to the criminal forfeiture of $746, which was seized from him then.

In exchange for his pleas, the state dismissed additional charges of robbery and unlawful possession of heroin.

Dionne was sentenced to serve an initial four years in prison, with an additional four years suspended and three years of probation. He was ordered to pay $38 restitution for money taken from Walmer and fined $400.

Conditions of probation prohibit Dionne from contact with Sarah Negrete, 32, of Chelsea, who also faces charges of robbery, aggravated assault and theft by unauthorized taking in connection with the attack on Walmer. Her next court hearing is in September, and she remains free on $10,000 cash bail.

Augusta police Detective Brian Wastella wrote in an affidavit filed with the court that he concluded Dionne, another man and Negrete “worked together to lure Walmer into that dark, back alley between 386 and 388 Water St. with the intention of assaulting and robbing him.”

Assistant District Attorney Kate Marshall told Mullen that there had been three codefendants originally with two of them, Dionne and Negrete, being prosecuted.

Dionne said, “No, your honor,” when Mullen asked if he had anything to say.

Dionne’s defense attorney, Lisa Whittier, said the case was “extremely triable,” but that Dionne wanted to accept the plea agreement that had been negotiated.

Marshall said Dionne had previous convictions for assault and theft and that he had served at least a year in prison previously.

Mullen told Walmer that Maine is usually a safe place.

“I hope you don’t lose faith in the state because of the awful episode you had in May of last year,” Mullen said, adding, “I want you to understand it’s an eight-year sentence, four of which are suspended in an effort to see if Mr. Dionne can curb his behavior.”

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams


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