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Marine faces prison for assaulting wife

A 24-year-old Marine at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station will likely be headed to prison for choking his wife, threatening her with a gun and breaking a court order by contacting her.

Hayron Garcialemus pleaded guilty in Island County Superior Court May 24 to second-degree assault with a deadly weapon, assault in the second degree by strangulation, harassment, tampering with a witness and two counts of violation of a no-contact order.

Under a plea agreement, both the prosecutor and defense attorney will recommend that the judge sentence Garcialemus to a year and a half in prison. In addition, the attorneys will recommend that the judge issue a no-contact order barring Garcialemus from communicating with his wife for 10 years.

The sentencing hearing is set for June 18.

The investigation into Garcialemus began in May of 2009 after his wife reported that he had pinned her down and strangled her. The woman also told a detective about an alleged history of abuse, including an incident in which he pointed a gun at her and later shot the gun in their home.

Then two months ago, new charges were brought against Garcialemus after a detective discovered that he had been calling and texting his wife in violation of a court order. Court documents state that he violated the order 106 times.

Garcialemus’ attorney, Jon Ostlund of Anacortes, said that he had planned to use an insanity defense on some of the charges, based on post-traumatic stress disorder from his service in Iraq.

But a forensic evaluation from Western State Hospital did not support the insanity defense. The report states that Garcialemus didn’t report any direct involvement in combat, he didn’t present any symptoms during two interviews with the doctor and he denied assaulting his wife.

Garcialemus was a Marine sergeant with VAQ-129 at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station.

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