Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina announced that a 34-year-old Florence Township man was sentenced today to 12 years in New Jersey state prison for brutally assaulting his girlfriend in the fall of 2016.
Akil Herbert must serve 85 percent of the term before becoming eligible for parole. Under an agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office, Herbert pled guilty in September to Attempted Murder (First Degree) and Violation of a Restraining Order (Fourth Degree). The sentence was handed down in Superior Court in Mount Holly by the Hon. Philip E. Haines, J.S.C.
The investigation began on September 7, 2016 when patrol officers from the Florence Township Police Department were dispatched to the defendant’s residence on 5th Avenue in the Roebling section of the township on a report of a stabbing. An active Final Restraining Order against Herbert was in effect at the time.
The investigation revealed that Herbert stabbed his girlfriend multiple times in the back and face, breaking the blade of the knife from the handle. He then slammed her head against the ground before fleeing on foot.
Witnesses reported that Herbert ran down the street and into a wooded area. A manhunt ensued, and he was taken into a custody the next day at his residence.
“This was a tremendously violent assault,” Prosecutor Coffina said. “We are fortunate it did not become a homicide.”
Herbert was prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Courtney J. O’Brien, Supervisor of the BCPO Family Unit. The investigation was conducted by the Florence Township Police Department, with assistance from the BCPO Gang, Gun and Narcotics Task Force. The lead investigator was Florence Township Police Detective Nicole Bonilla.