Updated: Man sentenced for brutal beating in Paw Paw
VAN BUREN COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - A Van Buren County man will spend the next few decades in prison after trying to kill his girlfriend in front of the couples' two young children.
Newschannel 3 was in the courtroom on Monday as Kane Reeves was sentenced to serve up to 40 years in prison.
Just before he was sentenced Reeves begged for leniency, saying he acted out of love.
The judge responded that what Reeves did was the farthest thing from love and that the only thing that would protect the victim, their children and the public was for Reeves to be in prison.
"I've always been the kind of person that wants to believe in the good in people," said Mary Teske, who Reeves attacked. "I now know that I cannot be the person to save him."
Reeves sobbed openly in court Monday as the woman he loved for a decade forgave him for trying to kill her.
"I am relieved that my children and I are going to be safe," said Teske, "it's heart wrenching to watch the person you loved so dearly basically throw their life away."
Teske, her family by her side, also fought back tears, remembering the day Reeves broke into her home looking for a gun and then beating her in front of her two small children, all while she was pregnant.
"My three-year-old daughter had panic attacks and wakes up in night terrors out of fear from the attack," said Teske.
It has been a long journey in the months following the attack. Teske has undergone facial reconstruction, been to counseling and was diagnosed with PTSD.
"I take responsibility for what I did, not for what I've been accused of," said Reeves. "I was hoping to prove that I am not guilty."
Despite the physical evidence and testimony against him, Reeves pleaded with the judge to change her mind.
"I made a huge mistake I cannot take back," said Reeves.
Teske is hoping her story of survival can reach other women before it goes as far as it did for her.
"Don't make excuses for their behavior," said Teske. "You have no idea how toxic their influence can be on their children."
Teske says Monday's sentencing was a milestone on her road to recover, but knows the journey is far from over. She says she hopes Reeves will also start over.
"I don't want to see him rot in prison for the rest of his life," said Teske. "God gave me a second chance at life and I hope someday he gets another chance at life too."
Reeves was sentenced on two counts, he received 10 to 40 years for attempted murder and 17 to 40 for a habitual offender charge. He'll be serving those sentences concurrently.