Midland man pleads guilty to knowingly transmitting HIV virus
A Midland man who pleaded guilty to knowingly transmitting the HIV virus in four separate cases faced a potential maximum sentence of 180 years in prison following a jury’s recommendation Wednesday. The jury set 36-year-old DN’s punishment at 60 years confinement for each of three cases of aggravated assault resulting in serious bodily injury and another 20 years for a fourth case of the same charge, according to a press release from the Midland County District Attorney’s Office.
One of the four cases went to trial Monday in Judge Rodney Satterwhite’s 441st District Court. N pleaded not guilty to the charge Tuesday, but changed his plea to guilty in the four cases after testimony began, according to the release.
Judge Rodney Satterwhite sentenced DN to serve two consecutive 60-year sentences of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon causing serious bodily injury, with the remaining two sentences of 60 years and 20 years to run concurrently with the 120 years. N also is required to pay $32,000 in fines for the four charges.
N was arrested July 6, 2012, on a second-degree felony charge of aggravated assault resulting in serious bodily injury. The victim filed a criminal complaint against N in October 2011. She said she had contracted HIV from him while the two had been sexually involved between June and September 2008. She said he had knowledge he was infected but did not inform her or use safety measures, according to previous Reporter-Telegram records. When MPD detectives interviewed N in June 2012, he said the woman’s “claim that she had gotten the virus from him was probably true,” detectives wrote in the warrant’s narrative.
Texas courts have upheld the criminal charge of reckless or intentionally infecting a victim with HIV under Article 1.07a subsection 17 of the Texas Penal Code and Title 5 section 22.02.