A Circleville woman was sentenced to more than eight years in prison on charges relating to sexual assaults on children.

The Holton Recorder reported that Jackson County District Court Judge Michael Ireland sentenced Tharesa L. Darnell to eight years and four months of prison time on convictions for kidnapping and lewd and lascivious behavior. She will be credited for 203 days jail time served.

The kidnapping charge carried a sentence of 94 months and the lewd and lascivious behavior charge was six months. In December, Darnell was charged with rape, aggravated indecent liberties with a child, aggravated criminal sodomy, aggravated sodomy with a child and criminal threat. These charges were based on allegations of abuse that occurred in September and October of 2011, according to court documents.

On June 13, Darnell pleaded no contest to amended charges of kidnapping and lewd and lascivious behavior.

According to court documents, the alleged victim in the case was six years old at the time of the abuse. Darnell had been charged with child abuse previously: three counts of aggravated endangerment of a child and three counts of contributing to a child’s misconduct or deprivation in mid-2012, based on allegations of child abuse that occurred in 2009 and 2010.

She pleaded to one count of child endangerment and was sentenced to six months in prison, but the sentence was suspended. It was also recommended she register as a sex offender at that time, based on allegations that the charges of child abuse were sexually motivated, but the court ruled in September that registration was not required.

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