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Ashland man will get mandatory prison sentence for domestic violence

An Ashland man pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree assault in Jackson County Circuit Court on Thursday and will face a mandatory prison sentence.

Eric Torres, 36, of the 600 block of Park Street, entered the pleas as a part of a deal to drop counts of first-degree rape, first-degree unlawful sexual penetration, two counts of first-degree sexual abuse and two counts of first-degree kidnapping, according to his defense attorney and Oregon Judicial Department records.

"Mr. Torres felt terrible about the beating, but he never admitted to anything sexual," his attorney Mark Runnels said.

Torres is scheduled to be sentenced in November, said Runnels, who is recommending he receive seven and a half years in prison — a term prosecutor Dave Hoppe agrees with.

Torres' prison sentence ultimately will be determined by a judge. State sentencing guidelines set a mandatory minimum sentence of 70 months for a second-degree assault conviction.

Torres' charges stem from a domestic incident that took place in March 2013 at a home in the 600 block of Marshall Avenue, Medford, an affidavit states. He punched in the face and strangled his female victim until she lost consciousness, then he began kicking her in the ribs, the affidavit states. 

Following the assault, the 36-year-old woman ran to a neighbor's home and alerted police.

— Sam Wheeler