Natrona County Man Gets 17-25 Years for Strangulation, Assault, Child Endangerment By Meth
A Natrona County man who admitted earlier this year to repeatedly assaulting his wife, threatening to kill her and ultimately kidnapping her will spend well over a decade in prison on seven felony charges.
Clay Barnabas Boatman, 29, was sentenced Tuesday to 17-25 years in prison. When he gets out, he'll be placed on five years of supervised probation with an underlying 30- to 35-year prison sentence, which could be imposed should he violate that probation.
Boatman previously pleaded guilty to six felony charges: counts of strangulation of a household member, two counts of aggravated assault and battery and two counts of child endangerment with methamphetamine.
He also entered an Alford plea to a kidnapping charge. By entering an Alford plea, Boatman essentially asserted his innocence but admitted the prosecution has evidence which would lead to his conviction. For the purpose of sentencing, the plea is functionally the same as a guilty plea.
Boatman also pleaded guilty to misdemeanor counts of child endangerment and two domestic battery charges. He was sentenced to time served on those charges.
The sentence is part of a diligently-structured plea agreement which covers 10 charges brought against Boatman in three separate criminal matters, as well as an number of charges which were dismissed as part of the deal.
The victim, Boatman's wife, spoke at Tuesday's sentencing hearing. She asked Sullins for leniency.
"I ask you to see the changes that he's made," she said. "I know he's responsible and so am I."
"He's a great father to my kids," the victim continued. "We have two boys, and they need their dad."
Although Boatman went along with the plea deal, he also asked Natrona County District Court Judge Thomas Sullins on Tuesday to run the aggravated assault sentences concurrently, so that he could be released in time to play a role in the raising of his children.
"I deserve to be in prison and I know that," Boatman told Sullins before the sentence was read. "I'm going to continue to work as long as I'm locked up... afford me an opportunity to at least do something with my life."
"His main concern is his one-year-old twin boys," public defender Robert Oldham told Sullins, adding that Boatman intends to maintain contact with the children while in prison. "He's being punished enough."
"I just ask for some time with my kids before they're grown," Boatman continued. "Those babies don't deserve what I've put them through."
Sullins noted Boatman's sincerity and apparent commitment to improving himself, but declined to impose a sentence different from that already agreed upon.