By Liz Shepherd
WARSAW — A Leesburg man will serve two years in jail after severely battering a woman to a point where she was hospitalized in critical condition.
Jerry Dewayne Newton, 52, 3487 E. CR 750N, Leesburg, was charged with domestic battery resulting in moderate bodily injury, a level 6 felony. Aggravated battery and domestic battery resulting in serious bodily injury charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
Newton was sentenced in Kosciusko Superior Court One on Thursday, Aug. 19.
On March 14, 2020, a Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office deputy went to a residence to conduct a welfare check on a woman. A caller told dispatch the woman had contacted a relative about being beaten by Newton.
According to court documents, when the officer arrived on scene, he could immediately see that the woman had two black eyes, abrasions to the side of her face and a swollen lip. When the officer asked the woman how she got her injuries, she said they were caused by Newton.
The woman told the officer Newton hit her in the face several times. She also said he hit her in the ribs and that Newton told her to tell officers she fell down.
When the officer asked Newton what happened, he said the woman fell the night before. At that time, he denied hitting the woman.
One of the woman’s relatives took the woman to a local hospital for a medical evaluation. The relative later told the officer that the woman had been diagnosed with an undisclosed medical condition and was taken by ambulance to Lutheran Hospital, where she was in critical condition at the time.
During court proceedings, letters from the woman and two of her relatives were submitted as evidence to the court.
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Joseph Sobek said a restitution amount for the woman’s medical bills had not been determined yet, but that the state believed the expenses would be “substantial.” He said that restitution could be handled in the future, arguing that Newton should receive a 2 1/2 year executed sentence, with no alternative sentencing placement.
“He needs to focus on the consequences for his actions,” said Sobek. “Jerry can move on with his life. The victim and her family will never be able to.”
Defense Attorney David Kolbe asked the court to consider probation as part of Newton’s sentence to allow him to make restitution payments and to receive assistance with substance abuse.
Kolbe argued the sole aggravator in the case was the severe injury caused to the victim. He said Newton had accepted responsibility for his actions and that a jail sentence would not help Newton in his path toward reformation.
For domestic battery resulting in moderate bodily injury, Kosciusko Superior Court One Judge Karin McGrath sentenced Newton to two years in the Kosciusko County Jail.
She listed several aggravators that she recognized, including Newton’s criminal history, the severe injuries the victim received and Newton having no genuine sense of remorse.
A no-contact order remains in effect between Newton and the victim.
“In the PSI (pre-sentence investigation report), you say that your life is getting better,” said Judge McGrath. “And that’s great. But (the victim)’s life is not getting better and to this day, she still needs surgical intervention.”
A restitution hearing in this case is scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, Sept. 20.