Daren Marcus Bell was visiting his cousin in Arlington on January 17, 2012, when he found a stray pit bull. He was looking for a dog and decided to keep it, a fact he didn't mention to his girlfriend until she arrived to pick him up.
She was not quite so keen on the idea of keeping a pit bull and refused to let it into her car. They began to argue. So Bell, 44, did what any man who's spent much of the past two decades behind bars for drugs, armed robbery, beating up police officers, burglary, and domestic abuse would do. He pulled a box cutter from his coat pocket and slit his girlfriend's throat.
The girlfriend, a 7-inch gash across the front of her neck, nearly bled to death. She was saved by doctors at John Peter Smith Hospital.
It took a jury two hours today to decide that Bell was guilty of the attack and that he should spend the next 50 years in prison, according to the Tarrant County District Attorney's office. He'll be eligible for parole in 2038.
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Assistant District Attorney Amy Collum, noting Bell's lengthy criminal history, most of which took place in his native Illinois, said the jury "did what should have been done long ago. It will be at least 25 years before Daren Bell has the opportunity to terrorize anyone else."