LAURENS, S.C. (WSPA)–A Laurens County woman is finally getting some closure after being the victim of a domestic violence attack back in 2018. She now knows how long the man who nearly killed her will be behind bars.
7News was the only news outlet to be in court on Monday when Quientin Spearman pleaded guilty to attempted murder. Spearman will spend nearly three decades behind bars.
The solicitor said Spearman brutally attacked his then-girlfriend Calista Rice in 2018 with a box cutter and left her to die. But Rice survived, recovered, and is using her story to help other domestic violence victims.
“Today I am no longer his victim, today i am a survivor,” Rice said in court.
Sitting across the courtroom from Rice you might not notice her scars.
“The scars on my neck, these were cause by being cut with a box cutter and on my face,” Rice said.
She’ll tell you the story behind them and how her faith saved her life.
“I’m the one that has to deal with that every day to live with it. But it’s alright because I know who I am, and whose I am in Christ,” Rice said.
It’s Spearman who gave her those scars, and who took a plea deal on Monday in Laurens County Court in hopes someday he will be granted parole.
“Time is not the answer. But I know I’ve got to pay for my crime,” Spearman said in court.
Rice said she fought to heal physically from the attack.
“But to be beaten like a man. Stabbed with a knife, a butcher knife in the chest. Cut with a box cutter. I knew to put my hand over my neck and protect my neck,” Rice said.
She said she’s grown spiritually, and in court took the final step she needed to heal emotionally.
“I just want to say Quientin Eugene Spearman, I forgive you,” Rice said.
Now, Rice plans to use her experience to start her own organization to help victims of domestic violence.
“Whoever is in a domestic violence situation, get out. One hit leads to another hit, another hit,” Rice said.
Planing to use her second chance at life for a greater purpose.
“I’m looking forward to my new journey,” Rice said.
Rice said there were several organizations that helped her after the attack including SAFE Home in Laurens County.
Rice says she also plans to speak with state representatives about strengthening domestic violence laws in the state.
If you or someone you know needs help with a domestic violence situation you can call the National Domestic Violence hotline at 1−800−799−7233 find other resources here.