Prison ordered in shooting of Bertrand Township manPublished 10:25am Tuesday, January 26, 2010
By JESSICA SIEFF
Niles Daily Star
Facing a stack of charges, Marcus Kidd, 39, of South Bend stood before Berrien County criminal court Judge Scott Schofield Monday and received sentencing for his part in the June shooting and armed robbery of an 80-year-old Bertrand Township man.
Turning to face the courtroom, Kidd apologized to his victim, seated in the second row, for what had happened to him that day, but reiterated he was not responsible for the shooting.
On June 20, police reported two men had claimed to be having car trouble when the victim, who had been out mowing his lawn, stopped and offered to get each of them some water.
That is when Kidd, with three prior felonies, and co-defendant Charles Howell shot the man in the leg, took him into his home, disconnected the phone and took his wallet.
Police reported a shot was also fired at the victim’s head, but the second bullet did not hit him.
“It goes without saying how terrible this crime was,” Berrien County Prosecutor Mary Malesky said. “How horrific.”
Malesky said it was also obvious that Howell and Kidd had “carefully planned this offense out.”
Addressing Kidd, Schoefield said he felt the testimony of Howell against his co-defendant as well as his plea of guilty “was crucial” in the court’s opinion.
After apologizing to the victim and claiming he was not the one to pull the trigger, Kidd then heard from Schoefield in the matter of his sentence.
“Well Mr. Kidd you have the right to maintain your innocence,” he said. “The fact that you continue to do so plays no part in the sentence about to be given.”
Calling it a “horrendous crime” against a man who offered to help two men he thought needed it, “he was repaid by being assaulted, shot and robbed,” Schoefield said. “Something someone (like him) should never have to go through.”
Kidd was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $8,621 for medical costs that stemmed from the incident as well as court fees and fines totaling around $400.
Facing charges of armed robbery, first degree home invasion, assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder, weapons felony firearms and assault with a dangerous weapon, Kidd was sentenced to concurrent terms of 30 years in prison for armed robbery; 26 years for the home invasion charge; two years for the felony firearms charge; three years for assault with intent to do great bodily harm; and four years for assault with a dangerous weapon.
Also sentenced Monday, Schoefield had strong words for Timothy Strefling, who faced charges of uttering and publishing and concealing stolen property in value over $1,000.
Strefling’s claimed he’d made an error in judgement and a mistake in allowing a childhood friend to stay at his home.
That friend proceeded to steal thousands of dollars in tools and other merchandise from various victims, storing them at Strefling’s home.
Some of those items were returned, but not all.
Malesky argued that property not stolen by but still concealed by an individual still warrants responsibility to that individual.
The value of items stolen but not returned was in the amount of $4,594.
With no felonies on record, Strefling addressed Schoefield, saying that after losing his father, his brother and his son in the same year “I was not myself. At the time I really wasn’t thinking clearly.”
Schoefield showed little sympathy.
“Let’s be clear Mr. Strefling,” he said. “You were little more than a gracious host … weren’t you?
“I suggest that you be a little more honest with yourself,” Schoefield continued.
Adding he felt Strefling needed to “take a good hard, honest look at yourself in the mirror,” Schoefield declared he was liable for “any loss sustained by the victims.”
Schoefield sentenced Strefling to pay restitution, as well as court costs and fees, probation for five years with a curfew of 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. and 180 days to be served on home tether.