Man sentenced for assault

MEDFORD — A Central Point man was sentenced Monday to 10 days in jail for running over and seriously injuring another man while fleeing a party.

James Josiah Low, 21, of the first block of Attix Circle, pleaded guilty Monday in Jackson County Circuit Court to charges of third-degree assault and failure to perform the duties of a driver.

A charge of second-degree assault, which carries a mandatory prison term of five years and 10 months, was dismissed because prosecutors likely could only prove Low was acting recklessly rather than with "extreme indifference to the value of human life," said Beth Heckert, the county's chief deputy district attorney.

"He was really just trying to get out of there," Heckert said.

Low and a passenger were being punched through his vehicle's open windows as he attempted to leave a Dec. 16 party near White City's intersection of 29th Street and Avenue C.

In the melee, Low's vehicle struck 23-year-old Jesse Raymond Ward, of White City. Ward suffered a broken vertebrae, severely injured hand, broken pelvis and broken ribs.

Jacob Michael Barnett, 23, of White City also was injured but not as seriously, investigators said.

Low admitted to knowing that he had run over someone and to fleeing from the scene. Low has spent no time in custody on the case. In addition to the jail sentence, Circuit Court Judge Bill Purdy ordered Low to serve three years probation and forfeit his driver's license for five years.

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