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A man who assaulted two tourists inside a Yellowstone National Park bathroom last year should serve more than seven years in prison, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Jackson Burley Coombs, 30, received the sentence as part of a plea deal in which he pleaded guilty to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and simple assault.

Park rangers arrested Coombs on July 18 at the Xanterra Cabin Community bathrooms after he attacked a woman and her traveling companion, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Coombs wrapped his face in toilet paper and hid inside a stall in the women’s bathroom prior to the attack, authorities say. He attacked the woman after she entered a stall, punching her in the face and at one point grabbing her by the jaw.

The woman’s cries for help attracted her traveling companion, who went to help her, according to the Justice Department. Coombs then assaulted him, before using bear spray on both of the victims.

A passerby helped subdue Coombs until rangers arrived.

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“The nature and circumstances of the unprovoked assault in this case are truly appalling,” U.S. Attorney for Wyoming Mark Klaasen said in a statement. “I am so sorry for the pain and emotional distress the victim of this senseless attack had to endure, and thankful for the courage of those who heard the commission and took action to subdue Coombs before he could inflict any further harm.”

The woman suffered “significant bruising, swelling and abrasions to her head and face,” according to court documents. She also suffered a concussion.

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Editor

Joshua Wolfson joined the Star-Tribune in 2007, covering crime and health before taking over the arts section in 2013. He also served as managing editor before being named editor in June 2017. He lives in Casper with his wife and their two kids.

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