GALLIPOLIS — A Vinton man was sentenced Wednesday in the Gallia County Court of Common Pleas to 11 months in prison for a breaking and entering charge.
James Perry, 39, of Vinton, served as a defendant in a jury trial Nov. 30 after being charged by the Gallia County Grand Jury for violating Ohio Revised Code section 2911.13(A). He was represented by attorney Graham Woodyard and representing the state were Gallia County Assistant Prosecutors Britt Wiseman and Eric Mulford under Gallia County Prosecutor Jeff Adkins.
Prosecutors said Perry with his girlfriend at the time allegedly drove onto the property of Mary Nibert, located on State Route 7 early June 30. Nibert drove by her property and noticed odd activity. She pulled her vehicle over and called 911 and was able to identify Perry and his girlfriend, who then fled in their vehicle after being confronted.
Nibert testified in front of the court to what she saw that morning and identified Perry in the courtroom for the jury. She alleged that various items were missing from her property to be supposedly traded for scrap value. A photo Nibert allegedly took with her phone of Perry’s vehicle with its trunk open on her property was presented to the jury.
A representative of Coleman’s Recycling in Jackson County testified that Perry had come to his business June 30 to recycle items for which Perry then received cash. A receipt of the transaction was produced with an itemized listing of materials allegedly sold by Perry and a copy of his license presented as part of the sale.
Detective Chris Gruber, of the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office, testified that he verified Perry’s vehicle ownership and tracked the receipt of the Coleman’s Recycling scrap sale, as well as having further knowledge of Perry’s prior activities.
Perry testified on his own behalf and explained that he was on the Nibert’s property the day in question. He claimed he was there to dump old tires and not to take any items, however. He then explained his trip to Coleman’s Recycling was to sell items of his own and not those taken from the Nibert residence.
Jury members found Perry guilty.
“The (Perry’s) conviction by the jury was for a felony of the fifth degree, which in most cases requires a community control sanction,” Adkins said. “However, we successfully argued to the court that this defendant had violated the terms of his bond while awaiting trial by committing another felony and having law enforcement contact. We argued that based thereon that defendant should receive time in prison, understanding that the maximum sentence was 12 months. We were pleased with the court’s 11-month sentence which the defendant is to begin serving immediately.”
Dean Wright can be reached at (740) 446-2342, Ext. 2103.