38-year-old Angelo Bolden faces up to 21 years in jail after a law change that began in the beginning of the year required his wife to testify against him in court.
Officials say Bolden is charged with Felony Aggravated Assault Involving Family Violence and Battery Involving Family Violence after his wife testified that he abused her during a week-long case.
Prior to 2013, a spouse could opt not to get on the stand against their spouse -- which Dougherty County District Attorney Greg Edwards says kept victims from speaking out.
"This was the first case in Dougherty County where we able to use the new change in the law that prevents spouses who are victims of abuse from invoking a martial privilege to prevent evidence regarding this type of situation from coming before a jury," said Edwards.
Bolden was found guilty on Friday and is awaiting sentencing.