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Ex-LASD Deputy Only Gets A Year In Jail For Setting His Girlfriend's Hair On Fire

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Former LASD Deputy Alejandro Flores, 34, was sentenced to one year in jail by Superior Court Judge Roger B. Robbins on Monday for assaulting his girlfriend. Both the prosecutors in the case as well as the victim are upset by the short sentence, considering Flores pleaded guilty to nine felony counts, which included three of domestic battery with corporal injury; two of assault likely to produce great bodily injury; and one count each of aggravated assault, making a criminal threat, dissuading a witness and false imprisonment by menace or violence, the L.A. Times reports. Though Flores' was sentenced to a year, he will likely only spend six months in jail. Prosecutors say that Flores could have been sentenced to up to 14 years in state prison, and that they had offered five, but Robbins decided otherwise, ABC 7 reports. In addition to the jail time, Flores must also spend five years on probation, and complete both community service and a domestic violence program.

When the victim addressed the court, she said she worried about the impression this short sentence would have on other victims of domestic abuse. "Knowing what it finally took for me to finally stand up for myself and my son, with a one-year sentence it is almost like I'm being victimized again … by the system I trusted to protect me and my son. My fear of a light sentence like this is not only for me but for any other woman out there being victimized," she said. It really sends a powerful message to victims Don’t bother telling, the courts will protect your abuser."

The victim, whose identity has not been released, was in a relationship with Flores for four years, and at one point lived with him and their young son in Buena Park. She said that Flores abused her repeatedly over the course of several months, including an incident she did not report in which he broke her nose in 2014. In June of 2015, the couple got in an argument about their son's pacifier and Flores became violent, prosecutors said. He shoved the victim into a wall, hit her in the head, then held her head over the gas burner of their stove, setting her hair on fire. She testified that he turned the TV up to drown out her screams and informed her the only way she would be leaving their home was "through the coroner." She said he then threatened her with an off-duty gun, and though he later took her to the hospital for medical treatment, he remained present so that she could not reveal what had really happened to anyone.

The victim waited until the next day, then took her son and told both her family and police. Flores was arrested in June, and removed from his duties in July of 2015. He had been with the Sheriff's department for eight years.

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This short sentence comes at a time when many are upset about the flimsy legal punishments some men receive after being convicted of violence against women, most notably Brock Turner, a Stanford University student who received only six months in jail and probation for raping an unconscious woman in 2015.