A man who hid in a relative’s attic after stealing a shotgun and a quad runner vehicle earlier this year was sentenced to 14 and a half years in prison on Monday after pleading guilty to five felony charges.
Highland County Common Pleas Judge Rocky Coss described Elijah Cox-Burkard, 20, Hillsboro, as a “dedicated criminal,” citing Cox-Burkard’s extensive criminal record of 10 juvenile adjudications, at least six of which were felonies.
As previously reported by The Times-Gazette, Cox-Burkard allegedly broke into a home on SR 73 in March, wrestled a shotgun from the homeowner, pointed the gun at motorists, stole a quad runner vehicle from another residence, and then barricaded himself in a relative’s home.
The Special Response Team was called to the scene to execute a search warrant, finding Cox-Burkard hiding in the attic of the residence. The SRT took Cox-Burkard into custody without incident.
The Times-Gazette reported early last month that Cox-Burkard pled guilty to aggravated burglary, a first-degree felony; grand theft and having weapons under disability, both third-degree felonies; theft, a fourth-degree felony; and breaking and entering, a fifth-degree felony.
One count of aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony, was dropped as part of a plea agreement.
Highland County Prosecuting Attorney Anneka Collins recommended a total sentence of 13 years and 11 months for Cox-Burkard, including a five-year sentence for the aggravated burglary charge.
“Everything the juvenile court system could do, they did,” Collins said. “He knows no limits… He’s lucky to be alive.”
Defense attorney Adam King, who represented Cox-Burkard alongside defense attorney Lee Koogler, suggested a term of community control sanctions paired with a drug treatment program for Cox-Burkard, asking Coss to “take into consideration his youthfulness,” and the fact that he took responsibility for his actions.
“I want to apologize to everybody affected by this,” Cox-Burkard said during proceedings. “It was a bad decision.”
Coss responded by saying, “It’s not a bad decision, it’s a bad pattern… That’s just the path you’ve chosen.”
After some discussion, Coss ordered a total sentence of 14 and a half years, ordering the maximum sentence of 11 years for the aggravated burglary charge.
Also Monday, Jeremy Jones, 38, Fayetteville, was sentenced to two years in prison after pleading guilty to aggravated possession of methamphetamine, a third-degree felony.
Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter @DavidWrighter.
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