ST. CLOUD, Minn. - A man accused of torturing, beating and repeatedly sexually assaulting a woman has been sentenced in Stearns County to life in prison.

Twenty-three-year-old James Bryson will be eligible for parole in 15 years. Bryson pleaded guilty to first-degree criminal sexual conduct and admitted to the attack which Judge John Scherer described as "brutal and barbaric."

Bryson's parents testified in court Thursday that their son was mild-mannered and never violent before he took the sedative Ambien. The St. Cloud Times ( says the judge denied a motion by Bryson's attorney to present the involuntary intoxication defense.

Bryson jumped into the Mississippi River following the August 2011 incident and had to be rescued by authorities.


Information from: St. Cloud Times,