FARMINGTON — A Franklin County Superior Court justice sentenced a Weld man to one year in prison Wednesday in connection to stealing diesel fuel from the Weld Town Garage in December.
Joseph Ryan Cox, 27, formerly of Woodstock, pleaded guilty to felony theft by unauthorized taking or transfer with priors, and two counts of misdemeanor violation of conditions.
Cox, who is serving a two-year sentence at the Maine Correctional Center in Windham on Oxford County convictions, waived indictment by a grand jury, his attorney, Margot Joly, said.
Assistant District Attorney James Andrews said if the matter went to trial, the court would hear testimony from Franklin County Sheriff's Deputy David Rackliffe that the department received a report of theft from the Weld Town Garage in early December.
Rackliffe would testify that he set up a surveillance equipment at the garage and when he viewed the video a few days later, a man was seen at about 4 a.m. wearing a handkerchief across his face with safety glasses and was covered in camouflage. He also had two fuel cans in his hands, Andrews said.
Testimony would also be heard that on Dec. 8, Rackliffe went to do a bail check on Joseph Cox. He observed fresh prints in the snow on the ground but Cox was not home. Rackliffe returned later and Cox was home. He did a search of the house and observed clothing that matched what the person was wearing on the video. He also observed that the fuel tank had been filled and that two fuel cans matching those on the video were sitting next to the tank, Andrews said.
Justice Michaela Murphy sentenced Cox to one year in prison to run concurrently with the sentence he is serving on the Oxford County case. He was also ordered to pay $268 in restitution to the Town of Weld.
She also sentenced him to serve six months each on the violation of release charges to run concurrent with the theft sentence and the Oxford County sentence.
Joly told the court that Cox had gotten lost in the system and had been sitting in Somerset County jail for a while before he contacted her and she got it straightened out. She would like him to receive credit for the time served there, she said.
NOTE: This article has been modified since it first appeared to reflect the correct Franklin County Sheriff's deputy who handled the Weld case. The information was incorrect.