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Probation violator, burglar each handed prison sentences

A man accused of violating his probation by getting arrested on new charges and an Ironton man who pleaded guilty to burglary were among those making appearances Wednesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

Dakota Neff, 22, of Wilmington, was sentenced to 30 months in prison for his admission to violating his probation, also known as community control sanctions.

Neff was placed on probation after he pleaded guilty to charges of failure to comply with the order and signal of a police officer and assault on a peace officer.

“He violated his probation by not showing up (for his probation visits) and committing another crime in another county and spent six months in prison,” Assistant Lawrence County Prosecutor Mack Anderson told Judge Charles Cooper. “And then there’s the new indictment.”

Neff still faces additional prison time on the new indictment alleging two counts of burglary.

Neff’s attorney, Tyler Smith, countered that Neff had in fact reported regular to his probation officer for two and a half years.

He had asked that Neff be given a lighter prison sentenced but in the end Cooper sided with Anderson, citing “various problems and difficulties the defendant has had since the original commencement of his case.”

Neff waived his right to a speedy trial on the new charges.

Also Wednesday, Alexander Huddle, 30, of 4644 County Road 29, Pedro, pleaded guilty to burglary, two counts of aggravated menacing and disrupting a public service.

Cooper sentenced him to a total of five years in prison.

Joshua Johnson, 22, pleaded guilty to one count of complicity to burglary.

Cooper sentenced him to four years community control sanctions under intensive supervised probation (CCS/ISP) and ordered him to successfully complete a rehabilitation program at the STAR Community Justice Center.

Anderson said Johnson’s codefendant had made full restitution to the victim and the victim had not wanted to see the culprits seriously punished.

“I appreciate the opportunity for a second chance,” Johnson told Cooper.

Cooper told Johnson, “The court doesn’t generally view home invasion as something that merits a CBCF instead of prison. I want you to take advantage of the program there ( at STAR) and take your CCS seriously.”