New Sharon man pleads guilty to stealing jewelry, cash from Wilton home

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FARMINGTON — A New Sharon teenager pleaded guilty Wednesday to stealing jewelry and cash from a Wilton home in April. Sentencing was deferred for two years in an agreement that requires Brian J. Durrell, 18, to complete certain criteria by Oct. 28, 2016, when he is scheduled to appear in court.

Durrell, 18, and a 17-year-old Farmington boy, now 18, who faces similar charges, will be required to pay a total of $28,822.68 in restitution. The Farmington man’s case is in juvenile court and has not been resolved, Assistant District Attorney Joshua Robbins said. He is scheduled to appear in that court at 2 p.m. on Oct. 28.

Durrell pleaded guilty Wednesday in Franklin County Superior Court to lesser class felony charges of burglary and theft by unauthorized taking and transfer than he was indicted on.

When Durrell was arrested by Wilton police, he and a juvenile were said to have stolen more than $50,000 in cash and jewelry.

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If the case had gone to trial, Robbins said testimony would have been heard that the Wiles returned home from vacation on April 30 and discovered the theft. A witness told them that he had seen a truck belonging to Durrell, a friend of a family member.

Testimony from Wilton police would also show that during their investigation, it was discovered that some of the jewelry had been sold in stores in Bangor and Farmington. In one case, Durrell told the owner that the jewelry had been bequeathed to him.

Wilton police would also testify that both Durrell and the juvenile admitted to stealing the jewelry and cash, Robbins said.

Wilton police Chief Heidi Wilcox previously said they had recovered more than $10,000 in items.

Testimony would also show that some of the jewelry had been taken over a period of time, Robbins said.

If Durrell is successful in completing the deferred sentencing agreement, he will be able to withdraw his pleas to the felonies and plead to misdemeanor charges, Judge Nancy Carlson said. If he is not successful, his pleas to the felonies will stand and it will be an open sentence on the two charges.

The two charges each carry a maximum of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Kent Wiles, whose home was burglarized, addressed the court. He said that police reports do not mention the intangible effects the crimes have had on the victims. He said there has been emotional damage to his family, a violation of trust and ruined friendships.

More importantly, he said, is that his teenage daughter no longer feels safe in her home.

He also noted that he has not seen any remorse from Durrell, and that concerns him.

“I hope you take this as a life lesson and move on to become a better person,” Wiles said.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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