MIAMI COUNTY — Two people involved in multiple business break-ins, including a local jewelry store in 2017, were arraigned in Miami County Common Pleas Court on Wednesday.
Kenneth E. Evans, 41, of Dayton, was arraigned on first-degree felony engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, second-degree felony conspiracy to engage in a pattern of corrupt activity; fourth-degree felony theft; three counts of breaking and entering and three counts of possession of criminal tools, all fifth-degree felonies and a misdemeanor charge of theft. The indictment also indicates a forfeiture of a motor vehicle was part of the grand jury indictment for Evans.
Evans’s counsel, Charles Slicer Sr., said Evans would stand mute to the charges. Miami County Common Pleas Court Judge Jeannine Pratt entered a plea of not guilty on his behalf. Pratt set bond for $200,000 on all charges and ordered a bond check if he should post bond.
Marcus Gates, 36, of Dayton, was arraigned on first-degree felony engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and second-degree felony conspiracy to engage in a pattern of corrupt activity. Gates also stood mute to the charges and Pratt entered a not guilty plea on his behalf. Pratt ordered a bond check and set bond for $100,000.
The first-degree felony engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity carries a sentence of three to 11 years and a $20,000 fine or three times the amount of items that were involved in the case. The second-degree felony conspiracy charge carries a two-to-8-year sentence.
The cases will be held in Judge Stacy Wall’s court. Both defendants had their pre-trial conferences set for March 25.
Co-defendants Michele Gue, 46, and Kevin Ashley, 45, both of Dayton, were previously arraigned on similar charges.
Approximately 13 business, two businesses in Troy, were involved, including Harris Jewelers and Check Into Cash. The suspects allegedly stole $150,000 worth of jewelry, watches and equipment from Harris Jewelers in a break-in reported in October 2017. The suspects in that incident gained entry through the roof to the jewelry store. Other jewelry stores and businesses in the Miami Valley were also targeted in the multi-county theft ring.
One co-defendant has yet to be arraigned in connection with the case.