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Family of man convicted of beating wife: "Not the whole story"

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Arp (KYTX) -- The family of a man sentenced to 10 years in prison for punching his wife, says the whole story isn't being heard. Our Jaime Gerik spoke to Joshua Bates' sister tonight -- who's upset at the punishment putting her brother away for an unusually long time.

"She is a victim in this case, but so is he," Ashley Hymer, the sister of Joshua Bates, said. Hymer can't believe her brother, at 26 years old, is sentenced to 10 years behind bars.

"He doesn't deserve as much time as he got," Hymer said.
She explains there was a buildup that led to Joshua punching his wife into the ground last December. Her brother told her she threatened to take away their son.
 
"She decided to tell him he wasn't going to see JJ anymore and he went kind of crazy. She started shoving him repeatedly and she hit him in his face 3 times before he hit her," Hymer said.
But prosecutors argued a different picture. They showed Bates had an extensive criminal history dating back to age 17.

"But for the conduct of Joshua Bates, we wouldn't be here talking about two to twenty. And you don't get to the top of the ladder without some effort," Lucas Machicek, Smith County Assistant District Attorney, said.

His family doesn't like Bates being labeled a wife beater, and says a more fitting title is great dad.

"He puts family first no matter what, especially his son," Hymer said.
When asked why it wasn't mentioned during the trial that Joshua's wife allegedly hit him first-- Hymer claims defense lawyers didn't think it would help his case.
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