- Associated Press - Friday, April 7, 2017

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - A Billings man who served two decades in prison for killing his wife has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for assaulting his girlfriend.

The Billings Gazette reports (https://bit.ly/2oPCoQv) a judge went above the prosecutor’s recommendation of 15 years in sentencing Frank Joe Belmarez Thursday. The judge said Belmarez had a lack of remorse and cited his history of violence.

Belmarez had been on probation when he assaulted a woman in July. The victim testified during trial that Belmarez assaulted and choked her and she feared she would die. Officers said she had a broken nose and a concussion.

Belmarez had claimed self-defense. He was acquitted of aggravated assault but convicted of partner or family member assault.

Belmarez was sent to prison in 1990 for his wife’s stabbing death and was released in 2013.

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Information from: The Billings Gazette, https://www.billingsgazette.com


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