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Claremont Woman Convicted In Sexual Assault of Minors

  • Ashley Blood of Claremont enters the courtroom to change her plea to guilty and receive her sentence at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  Blood received two sentences of 25 years to life in prison for two counts of aggrivated felonious sexual assault and two sentences of 15 to 30 years in prison for producing sexual abuse images. <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)

    Ashley Blood of Claremont enters the courtroom to change her plea to guilty and receive her sentence at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014. Blood received two sentences of 25 years to life in prison for two counts of aggrivated felonious sexual assault and two sentences of 15 to 30 years in prison for producing sexual abuse images.
    (Valley News - Sarah Priestap) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ashley Blood remains stoic, tapping her shackled feet and only occasionally wiping a tear from her face during her change of plea and sentencing hearing at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)

    Ashley Blood remains stoic, tapping her shackled feet and only occasionally wiping a tear from her face during her change of plea and sentencing hearing at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.
    (Valley News - Sarah Priestap) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Sullivan County Attorney Marc Hathaway argues that Ashley Blood is not fit to live in the community during sentencing for Ashley Blood of Claremont at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)

    Sullivan County Attorney Marc Hathaway argues that Ashley Blood is not fit to live in the community during sentencing for Ashley Blood of Claremont at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.
    (Valley News - Sarah Priestap) Purchase photo reprints »

  • Ashley Blood of Claremont enters the courtroom to change her plea to guilty and receive her sentence at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  Blood received two sentences of 25 years to life in prison for two counts of aggrivated felonious sexual assault and two sentences of 15 to 30 years in prison for producing sexual abuse images. <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)
  • Ashley Blood remains stoic, tapping her shackled feet and only occasionally wiping a tear from her face during her change of plea and sentencing hearing at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)
  • Sullivan County Attorney Marc Hathaway argues that Ashley Blood is not fit to live in the community during sentencing for Ashley Blood of Claremont at the Sullivan County Superior Court in Newport, Vt., on July 16, 2014.  <br/>(Valley News - Sarah Priestap)

Newport — A Claremont woman pleaded guilty Wednesday to two counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault against two children who had been in her care and was sentenced to 25 years to life in New Hampshire State Prison on each count.

Ashley Blood, 26, who lived on Hanover Street and was arrested along with her husband, Kevin Blood, in December, responded with a direct “yes” to a series of questions by Sullivan County Superior Court Judge Brian Tucker. When she was asked at the end of the hearing whether she wanted to make a statement, Blood, who cried at times, declined.

She is to begin serving her sentence immediately. Blood also received two 15-to-30-year sentences for guilty pleas on two counts of the manufacture of sexual abuse images, which had been stored on a flash drive and police were able to retrieve. If she is ever released from prison, Blood will remain under the supervision of the Department of Corrections and can never have any unsupervised contact with any minor children or contact with either victim.

The two victims have been adopted by another couple, and that family’s attorney said the children are having a difficult time. “Every day is a struggle and probably will be the rest of their lives,” said attorney Russ Rilee.

As a general practice, the Valley News does not identify victims of sex crimes.

Sullivan County Attorney Marc Hathaway detailed the charges against Blood and offered evidence contained on the 14 different videos of the assaults. He said Blood had little remorse for her actions and, even after she was incarcerated and awaiting trial, she demonstrated “callous disregard” for the children.

The life sentence, the lifetime supervision requirement and a requirement that she participate in counseling and a sex-offender program ensure that Blood will “never be released into the community” unless the Department of Corrections deems her release appropriate, Hathaway said in court.

A victim impact statement read in court by the adoptive father, Daniel Cole, said the two children have had bad dreams and nightmares and have been “scarred for life.” Even life in prison for Blood can’t change the damage done, he said.

Cole tearfully spoke of the horror they have had to endure and said he cannot grasp how Blood could commit such heinous acts.

“I hope no parent ever has to live with anything like this,” said Cole, overcome by emotion.

The Bloods were charged with assaulting the children in their apartment on two separate incidents last November. Ashley Blood’s attorney, James Mulligan, said his client agrees with the sentence.

“She understands she has a very long way to go. She knows it (sentence) is the right thing to do,” Mulligan said.

Kevin Blood remains in jail and is facing similar charges to those of his wife .

Patrick O’Grady can be reached at pogclmt@gmail.com.