Man gets 10 years for rape

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A Miller County jury handed down a 10-year sentence Friday afternoon after finding a Texarkana man guilty of raping a woman in 2016.

Ulrick Hillman, 35, must serve 70 percent of his sentence before he will be eligible for parole and must register as a sex offender upon release from prison. Hillman was taken into custody at the end of trial Friday and will be held in the Miller County jail until he is transported to the Arkansas Department of Correction.

The victim testified Thursday that she knew Hillman because he is a close friend of the father of her children. She said Hillman has spent the night on a sofa in her apartment but only when her children’s father was living there.

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The victim testified that she went to a nightclub in Texarkana, Texas, the night of June 2, 2016, with a girlfriend. She said that she saw Hillman while there and that he was asking her friends if they planned to go to the victim’s house after leaving the club. The woman said Hillman told her he hoped to come to her apartment after clubbing but that she told him, “No.”

The victim said she got home in the early hours of June 3, 2016, and was feeling intoxicated from drinks she’d had while out with her friends. She said she locked her door and undressed before getting into bed. The woman said she heard banging and the sound of her doorbell but did not get up to answer it. A short while later, the woman said she heard noise from a window and then felt someone bounce on her bed.

The victim said she didn’t recognize Hillman’s face at first because it was dark, but she did recognize his voice. The woman said she repeatedly told Hillman to leave but her forced himself on her. The petite woman said she attempted tofight Hillman off but was no match for the physically larger man.

She said that after raping her, Hillman complained that she didn’t have anything to drink in her refrigerator and left with a frozen Totino’s Pizza. The woman said she tried to call her children’s father after Hillman left but called a close, trusted girlfriend when he didn’t answer. The woman said her friend encouraged her to call police.

Crime scene photos shown during the trial included a picture of the woman’s first-floor aparment’s exterior. Visible is a window, slightly cracked open with a bent window screen leaning on the side of the building below it. The victim testified that she was never able to spend another night in the apartment.

Analysts with the Arkansas State Crime Lab testified that Hillman’s DNA was recovered from samples collected during a sexual assault examination. Texarkana, Ark., Detectives Jason Haak and Wayne Easley testified that Hillman claimed he never had sex with the victim during an interview conducted after the allegations were made.

Deputy Prosecuting Attorneys Connie Mitchell and Kristian Robertson prosecuted Hillman. Hillman was represented by Texarkana attorney Jasmine Crockett.

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