ELLSWORTH — A Trenton man is to spend two years in prison after pleading guilty last week to an aggravated assault charge stemming from his attack in February of a female housemate.
James Stanton Jr., 49, was sentenced to eight years in prison with all but two years suspended after entering the plea Friday in a Hancock County courtroom. Following his period of incarceration, Stanton is to serve three years probation.
Stanton assaulted the woman during the early morning of Feb. 11 at the home they shared on the Oak Point Road in Trenton. Initially reported as a stabbing, the investigation revealed Stanton hit the victim, who was 21 at the time, on the head with a hammer-like tool, said the prosecutor, assistant district attorney Mary Kellett.
The victim regained consciousness to find Stanton standing near her with a large knife, Kellett said. She was able to run to a nearby home for help.
Stanton left the home before police arrived. State police and game wardens located him around 2 a.m. in nearby woods, suffering from self-inflicted stab wounds and frostbite. He was taken by LifeFlight helicopter to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor for treatment. After his release on Feb. 17, he was booked into the Hancock County Jail. He has been in custody since that time, Kellett said.
The victim, who sustained a fractured skull, at first thought she had been stabbed. However, her DNA was found on the hammer and Stanton’s DNA on the handle of the tool, Kellett said.
In April, a Hancock County grand jury indicted Stanton on single counts of aggravated assault and gross sexual assault. The gross sexual assault charge was dropped after prosecutors determined there were issues of proof if the case had gone to trial, Kellett said.
Aggravated assault is a class B crime, punishable by up to ten years in prison. Stanton has no prior criminal record, Kellett said.