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Saturday, April 2nd, 2011

Area man receives jail sentence for assault

By Margie Wuebker
A 28-year-old Burkettsville man apologized to his victim prior to sentencing Friday morning in Mercer County Common Pleas Court.
Andrew "Drew" Siefring, 45 Jefferson St., was sentenced to eight months in the Mercer County Adult Detention Facility as part of community control sanctions imposed on an amended charge of attempted felonious assault, a third-degree felony. There is a possibility the time can be served through participation in the jail's work release program.
Other terms imposed by Judge Jeffrey Ingraham include up to five years supervision following release from jail, as well as an additional 90 days jail to be served upon notice of his probation officer. This is typically ordered in the event of a violation. Ingraham also extended credit for 49 days served during pendency of the case and ordered $7,264.63 in restitution to cover the victim's out-of-pocket medical bills and lost wages.
The maximum sentence for such an offense is five years in prison plus a $15,000 fine.
Siefring spoke of the "irrational decision" of his actions, turning to look at the dark-haired woman seated with two dozen family members and friends.
"If I could take it all back I would," he said of the Aug. 10 incident. "Alcohol clouded my judgement. I'm very sorry."
The victim asked Ingraham to send a message "to those who think that they can get away with beating our mothers, our daughters, our sisters and our friends."
"I live in fear knowing how close to death I came that night," she said. "I have begun locking my doors even when I am home. I constantly look over my shoulder."
She paused to regain composure before adding, "I am a prisoner of my fear and my children have inherited that prison term along with me."
The dark-haired woman explained how her sons carry the guilt of not being able to protect her.
"They are teenagers and should not be taking on the burden of worrying if mom is OK," she added "They should be out living the carefree life of a teenager making memories, but Drew has taken a part of that away from them. I do not hate Drew for what he has done to me, but for what he has done to my children."
Coldwater Police were called to her South Second Street home on the night of Aug. 10. She reportedly answered the door, with officers noticing blood and hair on her shirt. The investigation determined Siefring and the victim had started fighting earlier in the day.
At some point Siefring forced the woman into a car and made her drive through the area. A stipulation of facts in the case indicates he struck her repeatedly and she passed out while driving in the vicinity of the St. Henry Night Club. She awakened in the passenger seat of the vehicle traveling in the area of Burkettsville-St. Henry Road.
Police later found blood at several locations in the vehicle as well as clumps of hair apparently pulled from the woman's head. She later received emergency room treatment for three broken bones, multiple bruises and lacerations and a closed head injury.
Siefring pleaded no contest Feb. 15 to the amended charge. The original felonious assault charge was a more serious second-degree felony.
Additional online story on this date
Grand Lake area residents get good marks for overall health, but the battle gets tougher every day.
Joyce Jansen, director of nursing for the Mercer County health department, said convincing people to care about their health isn't easy. [More]
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