Wilson County man convicted in grisly machete attack on ex-girlfriend in 2019


Santos Anselmo (Pitt County Sheriff’s Office photo)

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCN/WNCT) – Officials announced Thursday that a Wilson County man was convicted in a gruesome machete attack on his ex-girlfriend in 2019.

Santos Anselmo, 53, of Stantonsburg, was convicted in Pitt County Superior Court after a jury trial, Pitt County District Attorney Faris Dixon said in a news release.

The jury found Anselmo guilty of attempted first-degree murder in the summer of 2019 attack. Anselmo was sentenced to between 13 years and 15.75 years in prison. 

Evidence showed that during the June 23, 2019, incident, Santos Anselmo went to the home of his ex-girlfriend multiple times and threatened to kill her and her friend.

He returned that evening and chased his ex-girlfriend and her friend with a machete, according to the news release. The friend was able to get away and run into the house.

“The ex-girlfriend was chased by Anselmo across the street and pushed down at the roadway where he attacked her with the machete,” Dixon said.

The news release described the horrific injuries the woman suffered: deep cuts that went to her scalp, revealing part of her skull, a deep slash across her cheek, severe injuries to her hands and knee, and a partial amputation to one of her fingers.

The injuries to her hands and knee required multiple surgeries, the news release said.

Pitt County Sheriff’s Office Detective Nathan Hollingsworth investigated the case.

“In the month that is dedicated to preventing domestic violence, the district attorney’s office encourages community members to reach out and help anyone you think may be a victim in a domestic violence relationship,” the news release said.

— WNCT contributed to this report

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