The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Man sentenced in burglaries
BY KEITH EPPS
A man who broke into numerous Fredericksburg homes and businesses late last year and early this year was ordered Tuesday to serve 8 years in prison.
Jonathan Matthew Shepherd, 23, was previously convicted of 28 charges in Fredericksburg Circuit Court.
The charges included multiple counts of burglary and grand larceny.
Judge Gordon Willis sentenced Shepherd to a total of 81 years with all but 8 suspended.
According to the evidence, Shepherd’s burglary spree ended in January when Detective Carlos Reyes saw him inside a home in the 1400 block of Franklin Street in College Terrace.
There had been several burglaries in the area that week, including an earlier one at the home that Reyes had under surveillance.
After realizing that Reyes had seen him, Shepherd ran and temporarily got away. But he left his wallet and identification behind, and was arrested a few days later.
Police also recovered Shepherd’s DNA from the Franklin Street home and several others, prosecutor Travis Bird said.
Bird said Tuesday that Shepherd deserved a lengthy prison sentence because he violated people’s sense of security by entering their homes.
He said some victims lost precious family heirlooms “that they’ll never get back.”
Some of the homes were vacant. In most cases, Shepherd cut a screen and entered through a back window.
Bird also pointed out that Shepherd had 19 criminal convictions prior to the burglary spree.
Shepherd will be allowed to spend the latter part of his sentence in a special therapeutic program designed to help prepare him for his release back into society.
He was represented by attorney Amy Thorpe.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404