• 61°

Man gets 19 years for burglary, hold-up

An Ironton man will serve 19 years in prison for the burglary of several houses and the hold up of a Chesapeake gas station.

Judge Charles Cooper sentenced 21-year-old Walter Ballard, County Road 119 in Ironton, to 10 years in prison for the five burglaries and nine years for aggravated robbery.

Ballard pleaded guilty to the charges that he burglarized five Ironton houses and held up Clark’s Pump and Shop in Chesapeake.

Cooper said that, though precious items were stolen in each of the burglary cases, the worst thing that was taken was the peace of mind of each victim.

“I don’t think people ever feel the same way after their home is invaded,” Cooper said.

Ballard apologized for the crimes.

“I never wanted to hurt no one,” he said. “I know these charges make me look like a bad guy. I’m far from it. I am guilty. I apologize again.”

Also in court Wednesday was Amanda Blake, of 809 S. 9 Street in Ironton. Blake had previously pleaded guilty to drug trafficking and was sentenced Wednesday to five years in prison.

Blake, a mother of three children, had asked Cooper in vain for a lesser sentence and drug addiction treatment.

“I fear that my children will not remember me when I get out,” Blake told the court.

Alexa Keaton, 19, of 121 Township Road 1105 in Proctorville, was sentenced to four years of probation for one count of theft and one count of burglary.

Keaton addressed the court, explaining that she was on drugs at the time of the crime.

“I’m very sorry for everything that I’ve done,” she said.

Bond was set at $100,000 in the case of Clifford Hively. Hively, 41, of Proctorville, pleaded not guilty to five counts of drug trafficking and one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. A pretrial hearing has been set for May 5.

Henry Rood and Jennifer Roob, both of 433 Township Road 1055 in Proctorville, pleaded no contest to charges they attempted to set up a cable account in a false name. The two were sentenced to six months of community-controlled sanctions.

The court also set a trial date for Robert Hoke, 39 of 403 E. Front Street in Proctorville. Hoke will go on trial May 14 and 15 for charges of 1st degree rape. The alleged victim was a 9-year-old child.