A southern New Jersey man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for trying to kill a woman at a New Year's Eve party because she had previously rebuffed his romantic advances.
But the Asbury Park Press reports that Robert Hankins maintained his innocence during his sentencing on Friday. The 65-year-old Toms River man was convicted in February on attempted murder and weapons charges by an Ocean County jury that deliberated for just five minutes before returning its verdict.
The charges stem from a 2011 attack that occurred at a crowded party in Lakewood.
Witnesses at the trial testified that Hankins put the 58-year-old victim in a chokehold and slashed her neck. He then took the same knife and slit his own throat.
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