AUGUSTA — A Skowhegan man accused of attempting to strangle his girlfriend in Gardiner pleaded guilty Tuesday to domestic violence terrorizing and terrorizing in connection with that incident on July 24.

John S. Sheets, 51, saw an aggravated assault charge dismissed in exchange for his plea during the hearing at the Capital Judicial Center.

He was ordered to serve an initial 65 days behind bars, and the remainder of the 364-day sentence was suspended while he spends two years on probation. Sheets had been in custody since the incident.

Conditions of probation require him to complete a certified batterers’ intervention program, and domestic violence court. They prohibit him from having contact with the victim except through a third party to deal with the children.

Gardiner Police were called to a Middle Street residence about 7 p.m. that night for a report of a man and woman fighting.

An affidavit by Gardiner Police Officer Daniel Ross indicated that Sheets confronted the woman for returning home late and after arguing, he claimed, she became violent and started scratching and biting him.

The woman alleged Sheets confronted her when she returned from the food bank, called her a vulgar name, grabbed her by her throat, threw her against the wall and applied pressure to her throat. She said she started biting and scratching him to get away from him and started to lose consciousness.

The woman told police she told her two children to lock themselves in the car and call 911.

The prosecutor, Assistant District Attorney Frayla Schoenfeld said Sheets had a lengthy criminal history, but that it was from some years back.

The allegation in the original charge was a hand on throat, but no medical treatment was required, Schoenfeld said, telling Judge Valerie Stanfill that was the reason behind the somewhat lengthy sentence.

Sheets was represented by attorney Lisa Whittier.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams

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