Man sentenced to 25 years for beating, burning wife

A Cobb County man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for beating, burning and assaulting his wife in front of the couple’s children, according to the district attorney.

Devon Lamar Gilbert, 22, was convicted of two counts of aggravated battery, five counts of aggravated assault and three counts of cruelty to children in the third degree, Cobb District Attorney Vic Reynolds said Thursday.

“The repeated torture that the defendant inflicted on his young wife was horrendous,” Assistant District Attorney Molly Gillis said in an emailed statement. “Her injuries were heinous — ranging from deep bites, to burns, to bruising to scarring. The courage the victim demonstrated during trial was truly admirable.”

Gilbert was arrested in August 2012 and May 2013 on charges of assaulting his wife, Rachael Gilbert, records show.

In 2012, Gilbert was accused of burning his wife with a cigarette and making her get on the bed while he struck her on the back, legs and arms with a leather belt, causing significant bruising, according to his arrest warrant. The assault happened in front of the couple’s 1-year-old child, who was also hit by a belt, according to police. His wife had a scar on her chest where Gilbert previously had bitten her, in addition to other scars on her body, the warrant said.

In 2013, Gilbert burned his wife with a spoon he had heated with a flame, causing permanent scarring on her neck and arm, the warrant said. With two children in the car, Gilbert punched his wife repeatedly in the face, according to police. He also was accused of biting the woman several times, leaving raised, bloody marks, and striking her multiple times with a yard tool, the warrant said.

Gilbert had been held in the Cobb County Jail without bond since his arrest in May 2013, according to booking records. He acknowledged committing some of the acts during his trial, the DA’s office said.

“The jurors sent a message to the defendant that he will never abuse this woman again,” Gillis said. “We hope that the verdict allows the victim closure to this terrible part of her life.”

In addition to 25 years in prison, Gilbert must spend 15 years on probation to fulfill his 40-year sentence.