La Plata man gets 12 years for assaulting ex-girlfriend
Defendant pleaded guilty in June to assault, burglary charges in case
A 30-year-old La Plata resident has been sentenced to 12 years in prison with an additional 10 years suspended on charges of first-degree assault of his former girlfriend and third-degree burglary of her home.
In sentencing William Alphonso Clark Jr. on Thursday, Charles County Circuit Court Judge Amy J. Bragunier said, “I’m pretty sure had the defendant been left to his own devices that day, [the victim] would be dead.”
On the morning of Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, Clark used a large brick to shatter a sliding glass door in the back of the victim’s house on Shelton Court in Indian Head.
The victim was able to call 911 to report Clark’s presence, but was unable to escape when Clark broke into her house. Clark attempted to strangle the victim and repeatedly threatened her life while dragging her by the hair and punching her multiple times while she lay on the floor, reportedly covered in glass from the broken door.
Charles County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the victim’s 911 call, and one of the officers entered the home through a locked door. The officer reported that he saw Clark pulling the victim’s hair and punching her in the face with his fist, whereupon he drew his firearm and ordered Clark to release the victim.
Clark complied, and the victim fled outside to be cared for by a neighbor as the officer took Clark into custody.
Emergency medical services treated the victim’s injuries, which included cuts to her fingers and arms, swelling on her neck and a bruised and swollen right eye.
The victim told the police that she and Clark had dated the previous year, and that over the past two weeks Clark had been calling her, though she had not answered.
She told police that she feared Clark would have killed her if the officer did not enter the home when he did.
Charles County State’s Attorney Tony Covington praised the actions of the sheriff’s deputy who entered the house, and also commended the neighbors who had heard the victim’s screams and directed the officer to the her house.
“Evil wins when good people stand by and do nothing,” Covington said in a press release. “This defendant was held accountable for his crimes because good people took action in this life-or-death scenario.”
“We need more of that in this country,” he added.