Man sentenced for holding woman captive in Cleveland drug house

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CLEVELAND- Just one day after graduating from drug court, Amanda Gearhart saw the man who held her captive sentenced to prison time.

Gearhart was struggling with drugs when she ended up at a house on Cleveland’s east side in 2013. She was held there for three months, where she was beaten, starved and became addicted to heroin.

She called it “a living hell,” but was able to escape. Gearhart was wandering the streets looking for her next fix when she was arrested and admitted to Cleveland's drug court.

Darryl Nance appeared in court with his attorney on Feb. 12. (Photo: Dave Nethers/Fox 8 News)

Darryl Nance appeared in court with his attorney on Feb. 12. (Photo: Dave Nethers/Fox 8 News)

On Thursday, Darryl Nance was sentenced to six years in prison on one count of sexual battery and one count of abduction for his role in Gearhart's kidnapping.

“This is a sad, sad story, as all sexual abuse cases are,” Judge Peter Corrigan said during the sentencing. “Once again a vulnerable person was taken advantage of. A person with drug addiction is extremely vulnerable, and you and your cohorts took advantage of that.”

Gearhart celebrated her graduation from court on Wednesday. Since it was created nearly 17 years ago, about 1,500 people have completed the Cleveland program and 80 percent remain drug free.

Gearhart credits Fox 8 for featuring her on the missing person segment.