Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - A Stewartville man was sent to prison today in a criminal case linked to the suicide of his longtime girlfriend. An Olmsted County Judge handed 36-year-old Long Vang a 76-month prison sentence for his conviction on a felony charge of a pattern of stalking conduct at the end of the trial that took place in early January.

Vang was originally charged with 3rd-degree murder, 2nd-degree manslaughter, and the felony stalking charge several months after his domestic partner of 11 years took her own life. Olmsted County Attorney Mark Ostrem says the original criminal complaint essentially accused him of causing the woman to commit suicide by subjecting her to ever-increasing levels of domestic abuse that eventually led to her suffering a traumatic brain injury several months before her death.

A judge later dismissed the most serious charges brought against Vang and Ostrem, who has said he believes Vang’s conduct directly contributed to the woman’s death, vowed he would seek the toughest punishment possible at Vang’s sentencing hearing. Ostrem says he requested a 10-year prison term but noted today's sentence is about double the length recommended by State Sentencing Guidelines and is comparable to prison sentences imposed in many manslaughter cases.

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