Jason Browning (Source: Bulloch County Sheriff's Office)
BULLOCH CO., GA (WTOC) -
Jason Browning was sentenced to 20 years in prison on an aggravated battery charge Wednesday.
Browning pleaded guilty to charges in connection with beating his girlfriend Amber Fields.
Prosecutors earlier agreed to drop two other charges including aggravated assault.
In court Wednesday, detectives testified that in September 2011 Fields was nearly beaten to death with what was probably a large beer mug.
Judge F. Gates Peed said the crime scene photos had more blood than almost any other case he has been a part of.
According to the prosecution, Fields almost died. She was in the hospital for more than three months and in a coma for almost a month. The attack left her with two holes in her skull according to investigators.
Surgeons had to rebuild her face with metal plates. She also suffered a stroke because her brain swelled.
"I don't want what happend to me to control me anymore. That is not going to be what defines Amber Fields," Fields told the court.
Fields said she is recovering, but still struggles daily. Her eyesight is impacted from the trauma. She said she has trouble focusing, and there are more surgeries ahead.
In court Wednesday, the prosecution noted Browning had a previous DUI and drug arrest.
Browning's attorney told the judge his client couldn't remember the brutal attack because he was high on Spice.
Six of Browning's family and friends took the stand. Many of them said the attack was an "accident." But in the judge's ruling, he said, "this was no accident." Peed said he doesn't think Browning intended for the attack to happen the way it did, but that is not what's in question.
The sentencing lasted nearly seven hours. Browning showed no emotion during most of the testimony, even when Fields took the stand and described what she has been through.
Before announcing his sentence, the judge offered Browning the chance to address the court. He offered no apology to Fields and denied his opportunity to speak.
"I think this is a wakeup call for everyone when it comes to Spice. It is so dangerous," Jordan Hartley, a Fields' family spokesman, said after the hearing ended.