By NIKKI YOUNK
IRON MOUNTAIN - An Iron Mountain teen will spend a minimum of three years in prison for his part in an armed robbery that took place at an Iron Mountain residence in August.
Nikki Younk/Daily News Photo
Jacelin Sims, left, appears for sentencing in Dickinson County Circuit Court with his attorney Michael Scholke. Sims will serve at least three years in prison for a robbery charge.
Jacelin Sims, 17, was sentenced Tuesday in Dickinson County Circuit Court on one felony count of robbery.
Due to a plea deal, the charge had been amended from armed robbery to unarmed robbery. The maximum penalty for unarmed robbery is 15 years in prison, while the maximum penalty for armed robbery is life in prison.
The charge stems from an Aug. 6 incident at a residence on the 200 block of West Brown Street.
According to Dickinson County Prosecutor Lisa Richards, Sims aided two other suspects in robbing a man he knew. They held the man at knifepoint in his own home and stole $400 in cash and $250 worth of medical marijuana, she said.
While trying to resist the suspects, the man sustained non life-threatening injuries.
Richards added that the two other suspects in the case, a 35-year-old Niagara, Wis. man and a 26-year-old Fort Meyers, Fla. woman, have yet to be taken into custody.
In addition to the robbery case, Sims was also sentenced to concurrent terms on unrelated felony counts of breaking and entering a vehicle with damage to the vehicle and larceny in a building.
Those charges stem from incidents that occurred in the days after the robbery.
According to the criminal complaints in the cases, Sims used a brick to break into a Ford pickup truck in Breitung Township and stole food from an Iron Mountain apartment that his mother was house-sitting.
During the sentencing hearing, Sims' attorney Michael Scholke said that his client was a victim of bad influences.
"We have a very young man here, barely 17 years old, who made a very poor decision," he said. "He was taken advantage of, but he is responsible for his own decisions."
Scholke further noted that the three crimes are Sims' first convictions.
Richards also acknowledged Sims' lack of a significant criminal record.
"Although these are first convictions, they are very serious crimes," she pointed out.
Richards said that even though Sims has never admitted to entering the residence where the robbery occurred, he definitely facilitated the incident through planning and bringing the two other suspects to the residence. Sims also accepted a share of the stolen items, she added.
The victim of Sims' larceny in a building charge elected to make a statement in court.
She said that Sims' mother had access to her apartment in order to care for her pet. When the victim returned, she found her apartment "robbed and trashed."
The victim told Sims that she hopes he can turn his life around.
When given a chance to address the court, Sims apologized for his actions and expressed a desire to become a productive member of society.
"My whole life I never had positive resources to fall back on," he said.
Like the attorneys, Judge Mary B. Barglind noted Sims' lack of a prior criminal record. However, she stated that the seriousness of the offenses forces her to skip right over the possibility of county jail time and go straight to prison time.
For the robbery charge, Judge Barglind imposed a three- to 15-year prison term with credit for 111 days already served and an order to pay $1,850 in restitution. The restitution includes the $400 in cash and $250 worth of medical marijuana that was stolen and $1,200 of the victim's medical bills.
For the breaking and entering a vehicle with damage to the vehicle charge, Judge Barglind imposed a concurrent 11-month term with credit for 111 days already served and an order to pay $120 in restitution.
For the larceny in a building charge, Judge Barglind imposed another concurrent 11-month term with credit for 111 days already served and an order to pay $2,160 in restitution.
Sims will be eligible for the prison boot camp program after he completes one year of incarceration.
Nikki Younk's e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.