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Anthony Smith pleads no contest to assault, burglary, attempted rape charges

JASON CHANEY - Anthony Smith awaits sentencing with defense attorneys Victoria Moffett (right) and Jennifer Kimble.

A local man accused of stabbing two Prineville women and trying to rape one of them was sentenced to 20 years in prison Monday morning.

Anthony James Smith, 26, of Prineville, had previously entered a no-contest plea to two counts of first-degree assault, one count each of first-degree attempted rape and first-degree burglary. The sentence included a provision for registration as a sex offender.

The case was prosecuted by by Special Deputy Prosecutor Jeff Howes of the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office and Chief Deputy District Attorney Raun Atkinson.

The stabbing occurred on Jan. 29, 2017. Prineville police responded to a report of a female who had been stabbed in the throat and yelling for help. Officers hurried to the scene where they found one woman covered in a large amount of blood and holding her neck to prevent further bleeding.

She was able to tell officers that Smith was still upstairs. A neighbor who was providing aid to the victim directed officers to the specific apartment, telling them the male was upstairs and acting crazy.

Authorities then heard another woman in distress upstairs and ran into the apartment. In the back bedroom, the officers found Smith partially clothed and covered in blood from head to toe. He was lying on top of another wounded woman on the floor. She had suffered a significant cut to the right side of her face and there appeared to have been a large struggle/fight due to the amount of blood covering the surroundings.

With their weapons drawn, the officers gave several verbal commands for the defendant to show his hands. The defendant initially grabbed the victim and rolled onto his side, placing the victim between himself and the armed officers. Authorities continued to demand Smith to comply, and he finally did and was taken into custody.

Both victims were rushed to St. Charles Prineville emergency room for medical treatment of their significant injuries. Due to the serious risk of death associated with stab wounds to this area of the body, the victims were subsequently transferred by air to St. Charles Bend for more intensive treatment.

A police investigation determined that the defendant was the next-door neighbor of one of the victims, but they did not know each other. On the night of the attack, both victims were visiting in the back bedroom when they heard a noise coming from the front door of the apartment. The first victim went out to the living room and saw the defendant kneeling down just inside the door to the apartment.

Smith then rushed at her, pushed her up against the wall and stabbed her in the neck with a knife. The second victim then yelled at the defendant to leave the apartment, and Smith then turned his attention toward her. While he was distracted, the first victim ran from the apartment to get help from the neighbors downstairs. They immediately called 911.

As the defendant gave chase to the second victim, he tackled her to the ground in the bedroom. Smith stabbed her in the face/cheek area and demanded that she remove her clothing. He continued to hold the wounded victim at knife-point, threatening her to follow his commands. Despite her injury, the victim fought back and hit the defendant in the head with an object causing a struggle to ensue. Ultimately, Smith overpowered the victim, forced her to the ground and was in the process of attempting sexual assault when the three officers rushed in and rescued her.

One of the victims spoke at the sentencing hearing Monday, calling her time since the stabbing incident one of uncertainty and heartbreak.

"Even though you are being sentenced, my sentence started the night you made the decision to stab me in the neck," she tearfully told Smith. "As you will be serving your time safely in a cell, I have to face a world of confusion and fear after you took my sense of security away from me."

The grandmother of the second victim then spoke, describing her granddaughter as very excited to have moved out to live on her own. She noted that the young woman had saved up her money and chosen a place to live and had even contacted the police department to make sure the new home was in a safe location.

"She lived there three months and it was all taken away from her," the grandmother then added.

Following these statements, Smith's defense attorney, Victoria Moffett, spoke. She pointed out that Smith had no prior criminal history or any behavior patterns in the past that would suggest he was capable of the crimes he committed. She characterized him as an otherwise model citizen and military veteran, and noted that he still has no memory of attacking the two women.

Smith then spoke, fighting back tears as he expressed remorse for his actions.

"I just wanted to say I am so sorry for everything I have done," he said.

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