By Taylor Smith
WOODLAND, CA – During a domestic violence sentencing Friday in Yolo County Superior Court, an emotional victim impact statement from a mother who was allegedly abused by the father of her children requested a 10-year protective order, longer than the accused’s four-year prison sentence.
Judge Daniel P. Maguire determined that in exchange for a plea of no contest to his charges of inflicting injury upon the parent of his child and preventing or dissuading the victim from reporting, Ronald Robinson would receive a stipulated sentence of four years in state prison for his charges, with any remaining counts dismissed.
The court then heard the victim impact statement from a victim advocate who spoke on behalf of the victim, telling the court, “[the accused] tried to break me down until I was nothing but a shell of a person that I did not recognize.”
Shedding positive light on such a dark situation, she went on to highlight what she has learned and gained from experiencing such trauma.
“I know that it doesn’t matter if it happens once or a million times, it is never okay. I will never again stand by and let someone destroy my mind, body, and spirit the way you did,” she said. “I can take what I learned from the trauma and make sure that it never happens again.”
After hearing this statement, the judge emphasized the importance of victim impact statements and reminded the court that such violence is a serious matter with great consequences for both the abuser and the victim.
Judge Maguire then proceeded with the hearing, issuing a 10-year CPO requested by the victim to cover herself and four minors—who were determined to be her four children. Only one of these children was shared by the victim and the accused.
The accused informed the court that the child he shares with the victim is only one year old, thus the judge deduced that the victim and accused had 17 years of personal interaction ahead of them. He decided that a 10-year protective order would hinder the accused’s ability to interact with his child once he is out of prison.
Still wanting to respect the victim’s wishes, Judge Maguire decided to approve the 10-year CPO and enable future modifications.
“I’m going to issue the CPO but I’m going to check the box under 16B, indicating that the family court can modify this, so when he is out of prison he can go to family court,” said Maguire.
He explained to the accused and the victim, “You don’t need a lawyer. You can just go to family court. They’ll help you fill out the forms, and he can ask for some sort of visitation, and then the court will have authority to make modifications.”
Maguire noted that these modifications can be made in a way that allows the accused to have visitation with his child without forcing the victim to see him.
Judge Maguire sentenced the accused to four years in the custody of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation—minus 233 days already served awaiting trial—and fines totaling at least $370.