The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

August 8, 2012

Joplin man draws prison sentence

A Joplin man was assessed a prison sentence this week in Jasper County Circuit Court on a conviction for felony assault.

A judge also revoked his probation in a drug possession case.

Ira A. Jones, 43, entered an Alford plea Monday to a reduced charge of second-degree assault in a plea deal with a special prosecutor that capped the prison time he might be assessed at four years. An Alford plea admits not guilt but acknowledges that a conviction is likely if the case were to proceed to trial.

The defendant had been charged with first-degree assault, which carries 10 to 30 years or up to life in prison.

Jones assaulted Lisa Heimann, 48, on Oct. 22 of last year inside their residence on North Pearl Avenue, according to a probable-cause affidavit. The court document states that he shoved her into a wall and choked her. She suffered a separated shoulder and a broken collarbone.

Circuit Judge Gayle Crane assessed Jones the four years of his plea deal and ordered that the term run concurrently with the remainder of a five-year term he must serve on a previous conviction for possession of a controlled substance.

The judge revoked the probation Jones received in the earlier case after finding various violations of the terms of probation, including the arrest and conviction for assault.

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