BRYAN - Before lawyers could make closing arguments in his case, an accused kidnapper who took his ex-girlfriend chose to plead guilty to his crimes.
Thursday, Lance Gentry was sentenced to 25 years in prison on an Aggravated Kidnapping charge for the July 2013 incident where he took his ex from her College Station apartment, drove her to the community of Smetana and attempted to strangle her.
The victim was able to escape and call police.
Gentry, 36 of Bryan, also pleaded guilty to an Assault Family Violence by Strangulation charge, which earned him a 10-year prison sentence. Prosecutors say that was the maximum he could have earned. The Aggravated Kidnapping charge could have earned him up to 99 years in prison.
The victim of the crime was among those called to testify by prosecutors before Gentry decided to enter the guilty pleas. The State says they were set to show other abusive behavior by Gentry in the punishment phase.
Gentry's sentences will run concurrently. He will not be eligible for parole until he serves half his sentence.
"This man is a dangerous individual who preys on women and exerts control over them through violence," Assistant District Attorney Kara Comte said in a statement. "As with many domestic violence cases, his actions escalated from harassing messages to violent behavior. The victim in this case was fortunate enough to fight back and escape. Our community is safer because Gentry is is prison."