LINCOLN COUNTY, S.D. — A man convicted of aggravated assault for using scissors to with mutilate the breasts of his ex-girlfriend has been sentenced to 45 years in prison, reports CBS affiliate KELO.
Prosecutors had asked that Tony Ledbetter be sentenced to 30 years as part of plea deal, but on Tuesday a judge rejected the deal and sentenced Ledbetter to the maximum number of years allowed under the law.
Ledbetter, 46, called 911 in October 2016 after assaulting the victim, who was pregnant with his child, reports the Argus Leader newspaper. The victim told police they were arguing when Ledbetter punched her, slammed her head on the ground, and tried to muffle her screams by placing a forearm on her throat and stuffing a blanket in her mouth.
She went unconscious and Ledbetter used scissors to cut off one of her nipples. She awoke as Ledbetter began cutting at her other breast, she said, according to news reports.
Police said Ledbetter admitted to the assault, claiming it was in self-defense, according to the newspaper.
Before he was sentenced, the victim addressed Ledbetter in court, saying that she re-lives the attack every day, KELO reports. She said she looks at her scarred body and wonders why anyone could do such unthinkable things to a woman carrying a child.
Ledbetter also addressed the court, apologizing to the victim.