July 22, 1995 in Idaho

Man Who Threatened To Kill Wife Sentenced

From Staff And Wire Reports

A man who threatened to kill his wife and neighbor could spend five years behind bars.

But Mark Bergenske, formerly of Post Falls, could also spend as little as 180 days in prison, a judge ordered Friday.

In April, a jury found Bergenske guilty of two counts of aggravated assault after he threatened his wife, Susan Bergenske, and his neighbor, Anita Skrobut, with a fireplace poker.

Mark Bergenske and his wife had been married only one week.

He had been charged with nine crimes ranging from aggravated assault to rape after police reported that he sexually assaulted his wife and fired a gun near her head, according to court records.

Many of the charges were dropped after Susan Bergenske returned to her husband and failed to testify against him at a preliminary hearing. She later left him after he allegedly beat her again in Colorado.

On Friday, a district judge sentenced Bergenske to five years in prison for each of the counts of aggravated assault.

Bergenske first will spend six months in a treatment and evaluation program. If he successfully completes the program, he may be released on probation, said Kootenai County deputy prosecutor Lansing Haynes. , DataTimes MEMO: Cut in Spokane edition

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