Roberta – A Crawford County man who choked a woman at a Roberta motel in April pleaded guilty Friday to aggravated assault and was sentenced to 10 years, four of them in prison.
Prosecutor Neil Halvorson called 26-year-old Stephen Strange a “menace to society” during the plea hearing in Crawford County Superior Court.
Strange was charged in a series of crimes dating back to 2016. If his cases had gone to trial, Halvorson would have presented evidence showing:
Two witnesses saw Strange on top of a woman, choking her at the Roberta Inn on April 21, 2018. The witnesses intervened and Strange shoved one of them and threw a brick at his car, busting a window before leaving.
Earlier this year, on Feb. 12, two teenage boys were riding in a truck on Old Knoxville Road and started to pass Strange as he rode a bicycle. Strange, without provocation, swung a machete in a threatening manner along the side of the truck.
About a week later, three other teenagers were driving in trucks on East Crusselle Street near the Crawford County Board of Education building when they encountered Strange. Strange and another man were eating Vienna sausages from a can and Strange threw the can at one of the trucks as they drove by. When asked why he threw the can, Strange threatened to beat the boys.
On March 7, 2018, Strange threatened the same boys again at the Knoxville Store on Highway 80.
In January 2016, Strange became angry with an employee at the Knoxville Store and threatened the employee. When another employee asked Strange to leave, Strange put his hand on a holstered handgun in a threatening manner.
Strange also was charged with misdemeanor possession of a drug-related item in March 2017 and driving while his license was suspended in June 2017.
As part of his sentence, Strange is banned from the Knoxville Store for the duration of his probation. He must attend anger management classes and undergo substance abuse treatment as directed by his probation officer. He also must pay a $1,000 fine and restitution for the broken vehicle window.
Speaking after the hearing, Macon Judicial Circuit District Attorney David Cooke said, “Mr. Strange has bullied everyone in his path, terrorizing teenagers and adults alike. Hopefully, he will learn how to act more peacefully with others by the time he returns to Crawford County. If not, he’ll be spending more time behind bars.”
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Contact: Amy Leigh Womack