A Belmont man who had faced ten serious felony and misdemeanors counts pleaded guilty to a single misdemeanor charge recently in Allegany County court. According to a press release issued today, Gary J. Preston, 29, of County Road 2B in Belmont entered his plea of guilty to sexual abuse August 19th before Judge Thomas Brown.
Preston had originally been charged with two felony counts of assault, felony sexual abuse, felony strangulation, felony reckless endangerment, felony criminal mischief, felony unlawful imprisonment and the misdemeanor crimes of assault, sexual misconduct and menacing. The crimes reportedly occurred four times in Belmont between November 16, 2014 and March 20, 2015. The press release described the crimes as follows - Preston forced a woman to perform oral sex while holding and discharging a shotgun. He then temporarily squeezed the victims throat and neck so hard that the victim temporarily lost consciousness. The release also stated that while a passenger in a vehicle, he grabbed the steering wheel causing a crash. Prosecutors contend that he also intentionally cut the victims back with a knife. The injury caused two permanent scars on the woman's back.
The sentence handed down was six years on sex offender probation. He was also classified as a Level 1 offender. Judge Brown also ordered him to pay a surcharge and DNA fee.