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Longview man sentenced to 27 years for continuous violence against family member

From Staff Reports
Feb. 27, 2014 at 1:21 p.m.

A Longview man was sentenced Thursday to 27 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of continuous violence against a family member, Assistant Gregg County District Attorney Chris Botto said.

Eric Lamothe Hill, 38, was tried this past week in the 124th District Court on the third degree felony charge.

On Feb. 22, 2013, a woman who was pregnant with Hill's child went to Good Shepherd Medical Center to be treated for a broken finger, and told medical staff that she had been assaulted by her boyfriend, Botto said. She stated that Hill threw a rolling desk chair at her, and when she tried to block the chair, it hit and broke her finger, Botto said. Hill then jumped on her and started punching and kicking her, and a police officer dispatched to Belaire Manor Apartments in response to the incident noted bruising on the woman's shoulder and rib area in addition to the broken finger.

About 1 a.m. June 29, County Organized Drug Enforcement Agent Jacob Zimmerman and Longview Police Officer Kerry Higginbotham pulled into the Pleasure Palace off U.S. 80 to conduct drug interdiction, and saw Hill kicking the same woman in her face. A crime scene video revealed a small pool of blood where the woman was lying in the fetal position, Botto said.

At about 3:30 p.m. June 29, Longview police were sent to Belaire Manor Apartments in response to domestic abuse after Hill had assaulted his girlfriend again, Botto said. Officer saw injuries on the woman's face and found a 3-year-old boy "walking down the stair case carrying a machete raised above his head," Botto said.

Child Protective Services was alerted, and Hill was arrested on a charge of continuous violence against a family member and booked into the Gregg County Jail.

The third-degree felony carries a punishment range of two to 10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine; however, because Hill had two prior felony convictions, his punishment range was enhanced to habitual offender status carrying a punishment range of 25 to 99 years or life in prison.

Botto and Madison Hood represented the state. Defense attorney Hayward Rigano represented Hill. All proceedings were in front of Judge Alfonso Charles.



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