Man sentenced to six months for Catholic Charities break-in

LISBON – An East Liverpool man, who broke into Catholic Charities to steal items and used stolen credit cards to make several unauthorized purchases, was sentenced to six months in prison on Thursday by Columbiana County Common Pleas Court Judge Scott Washam.

In August, James A. Moore, 24, Marcus Street, East Liverpool, pleaded guilty to breaking and entering. The prosecutor’s information stated he broke into the Catholic Charities on East Fourth Street, East Liverpool, on July 24, 2011, ransacked an office, stole money and stole a video gaming system.

Additionally, he pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property and three counts of misuse of credit cards. According to court documents in July 2012, Moore used a credit card belonging to William McGill to make purchases of about $13 at Giant Eagle and both $34 and $71 at Walmart.

Moore’s defense attorney Jennifer Gorby stated she has represented Moore before, and he has always been cooperative with police and the court. Instead of prison time, she suggested a drug-treatment program would benefit Moore, who she believes began having issues with drugs possibly before he was even an adult.

Assistant County Prosecutor Ryan Weikart noted Moore has had previous convictions and was on probation at the time the Catholic Charities was broken into, a crime he was reportedly linked to through DNA evidence left behind at the scene. Although two of the current charges were Moore’s first felonies, it was noted he has an extensive history.

“Your criminal record is pretty extensive,” Washam said to Moore prior to sentencing. “Since 2007, you have been constantly getting into trouble.”

Washam also noted the presentencing investigation shows Moore attempted a Suboxine program, which helps those addicted to drugs to quit. However, Moore’s attempt came up short.

In two other cases before Washam on Thursday morning:

-Sheldon L. Robinson, 39, Crestview Road, Columbiana, accused of leading police on a high speed chases in May, asked for a change of attorney mere days prior to his jury trial. The chases reportedly went through East Liverpool and Wayne Township at speeds of more than 100 mph about 40 minutes apart. He is charged with two counts of fleeing and eluding.

Robinson told Washam he now has access to a pension fund and plans to withdraw some money from it to hire his own attorney. Washam explained to Robinson he needs to have his new attorney file a notice of appearance before the jury trial, which is scheduled for Monday morning, otherwise the trial will go forward as scheduled.

-Brandon D. Stephens, 23, Hazel Street, East Liverpool, pleaded guilty to burglary. He faces up to 36 months in prison and a $10,000 fine. Court documents state Stephens trespassed on the property of Rochelle Greathouse, who came home and found him in the process of stealing items from inside her house on May 5, 2013.

Stephens has been allowed out on bond with a house arrest provision allowed only to leave for certain circumstances. His defense attorney Joseph Ludovici requested Stephens additionally be allowed to leave his home to look for work. He noted Stephens has passed all the required drug screenings.

Washam agreed to the provision and set sentencing for Dec. 19.