Maryland man sentenced in plea deal after stabbing wife with screwdriver

A Hancock man was sentenced to time served Monday after pleading guilty to reckless endangerment for stabbing his wife with a screwdriver at a Hancock restaurant where they worked, according to court records.

Washington County CIrcuit Court Judge Viki Pauler sentenced John Franklin Houdersheldt III to three years in prison, suspending all but the 74 days he'd already served, according to court records.

Houdersheldt also was sentenced to three years supervised probation.

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Charges of attempted second-degree murder, and first- and second-degree assault were dismissed as part of the plea deal, according to court records.

The maximum possible penalty for the attempted second-degree murder charge alone was 30 years.

The maximum possible penalty for reckless endangerment was five years and a $5,000 fine.

Assistant State's Attorney Chris McCormack had no comment for this article.

Defense attorney Mikhaila Mc Nicolls said they were "happy to resolve the matter."

She said Houdersheldt addressed the judge during Monday's hearing, talking about wanting to provide for his children.

Mc Nicolls said her client is willing to work on his marriage.

According to the probation terms, Houdersheldt is not to have "abusive contact" with his wife. He also is to complete a parenting class and submit to evaluation for alcohol and drugs. He must get permission from the court before owning a dangerous weapon, according to court records.

What happened that led to an attempted murder charge?

Hancock Police were called to a local restaurant shortly before 6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 27, for an "undesirable," court records state.

The woman who called for assistance told the officer that Houdersheldt had assaulted his wife, Britnie Marie Shields, 35, while at work, according to charging documents. The woman told police Houdersheldt walked out of the business and tried to walk back in, and that she told Houdersheldt to leave. Houdersheldt walked away.

The woman also told police the restaurant manager had taken Shields to War Memorial Hospital in Berkeley Springs, W.Va., after Houdersheldt stabbed Shields with a screwdriver, according to court documents.

Shields told an officer that Houdersheldt was upset with her because he believed she changed his Gmail password, then stabbed her in the back, charging documents state.

This article originally appeared on The Herald-Mail: Maryland man sentenced for stabbing wife at work with screwdriver