HARDEMAN COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — A Quanah man charged with putting a gun to the head of a woman in a confrontation after a funeral changed his mind about a jury trial and pleaded guilty.
Jury selection for the aggravated assault with a deadly weapon trial of 52-year-old Randal Dean Sparkman began Monday, January 3.
On Tuesday, 46th District Attorney Staley Heatly said Sparkman decided to plead guilty to that charge, as well as a second charge of unlawful carrying of a weapon, and let the Hardeman County jury set his punishment.
Sparkman had no prior felony convictions and was eligible for probation, but the jury sentenced him to 2 years for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and the maximum of 10 years for the weapon charge.
Judge Dan Mike Bird suspended the 10-year sentence to probation, but he also ordered Sparkman to serve a term of confinement in a substance abuse punishment facility.
Heatly said Sparkman will have to serve all two years in prison before beginning his probated sentence.
Surveillance video that was admitted as evidence shows some of the confrontation after the funeral of Sparkman’s uncle last May in Quanah.
Authorities said Sparkman became angry that his former sister-in-law came to the funeral, and after the funeral, he accused her of using his wife’s identifying information. A heated argument ensued, and Sparkman pulled out a .32 caliber pistol and placed the barrel to the temple of the victim and threatened to kill her.
A short time later, a bystander summoned by the woman was able to talk Sparkman into handing him the gun.
A Hardeman County deputy later retrieved the gun and arrested Sparkman.