Court bench NDN

MADISON — A Norfolk man received a prison sentence for assault and terroristic threats in Madison County District Court on Friday.

Rael Diaz Estrada Palma, 38, was sentenced for attempted terroristic threats and two counts of third-degree assault.

Two of the charges — attempted terroristic threats and third-degree assault — came from an incident between Diaz Estrada Palma and his wife.

“The defendant and the victim were in a verbal argument about their relationship. The victim accused the defendant of cheating on her,” said Matthew Kiernan, deputy Madison County attorney. “He pinned her against the wall, he placed his hands around her neck and choked the victim to the point where she had trouble breathing.”

When law enforcement arrived, they were able to see marks on the victim’s throat, Kiernan said.

The other assault charges come from a fight that took place while Diaz Estrada Palma was in jail, Kiernan said.

Kiernan said Diaz Estrada Palma’s criminal history is not too long but is made up mostly of assault charges.

Diaz Estrada Palma said he regrets his actions.

“I just wanted to apologize for this problem I got myself involved in,” he said. “I just wanted to say that these almost 10 months I’ve been incarcerated have given me time a lot of time to think about what I did and the problems that I caused. I’m very sorry for having done this.”

Judge Mark Johnson said Diaz Estrada Palma’s actions were completely uncalled for.

“You had an argument, but it was verbal up to that point,” Johnson said. “There is no evidence to believe that what the victim was doing justified this assault.”

Diaz Estrada Palma’s behavior since the first incident, including the jail fight, rules out the possibility of probation, Johnson said.

“We have fighting while in jail. We have a violation of the court’s order to stay away from the victim,” he said. “All indications this defendant is likely to still commit further crimes of this nature.”

Johnson sentenced Diaz Estrada Palma to 26 months in the Nebraska Department of Corrections with credit for 260 days served and court costs.

Johnson sentenced others Friday for the following:

Third-degree assault

— Silvia Santaballa-Galvez, 51, Columbus, $750, costs.

— Andrez Espitia, 20, Madison, second-degree false imprisonment, 270 days in jail with credit for 2 days served, costs.

— Brett Roberts, 29, 1805 Parker Circle, attempted first-degree false imprisonment, 364 days in jail with credit for 79 days served, costs.

Attempted first-degree sexual assault

— Dominick Carr, 22, 810 S. Ninth St., 18 to 36 months in the Nebraska Department of Corrections with credit for 288 days served, costs.

Attempted abuse of a vulnerable adult

— Richard Nehls, 31, 1700 N. Victory Road, 18 months in the Nebraska Department of Corrections, costs waived.

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