FARMINGTON — An Augusta-area man accused of burglarizing a Chesterville home will serve nine months at the Department of Corrections, according to a plea agreement reached Friday in Franklin County Superior Court.

James Dingus, 32, pleaded guilty to burglary and was sentenced to three years, with all but nine months suspended, and two years probation.

Justice Robert Clifford agreed to allow Dingus to begin serving his sentence July 31.

Dingus was indicted in January on a charge of felony burglary for breaking into a home in Chesterville while a 17-year-old girl hid in her bedroom.

If the case had gone to trial, the teenager would have testified that she was home alone Nov. 11, 2013, when she heard a vehicle come into the driveway, Assistant District Attorney James Andrews told the court.

She watched as the man, unknown to the teen, came to the door. He knocked briefly then forced his way through the door and was carrying either a knife or screwdriver, he said.

When he came near the girl’s bedroom, he spotted the teen, turned, ran back to the car and took off from the Vienna Road property. She called police and gave them a description of the man and vehicle, a maroon Chevrolet Lumina, Andrews said.

She told police she heard the car moving while the man was in the home as though another person was driving it.

A local animal control officer would have testified that he was in Chesterville and heard the police calls over the scanner. He followed a vehicle of that description and was able to get the license plate number, Andrews said. He also saw two people in the car.

An investigation of cellphone records led police to Stephen Dingus, 32, of Hallowell, a nephew of James Dingus, Andrews said. The two considered themselves  brothers because they grew up together.

Franklin County Detective Kenneth Charles responded to the home, spoke to the girl and conducted an investigation. He would testify there were GPS coordinates on a cellphone, and when he called the cellphone, Stephen Dingus answered, and he spoke to him before Dingus hung up.

The two were arrested in Augusta three days after the incident.

Through a plea agreement, Stephen Dingus was sentenced to serve 4½ years in prison in May. Officials say he has an extensive criminal record.

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