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16-year-old sentenced to probation for home invasions

Published 12:48pm Thursday, April 15, 2010

By AARON MUELLER
Leader Publications

CASSOPOLIS – Juan Coria is lucky he didn’t spend his 17th birthday in prison.

Judge Michael Dodge of the Cass County Circuit Court elected to sentence the South Bend teenager, who was involved in a spree of home invasions and thefts in Milton Township, to three years of probation and one year in the Cass County jail on Friday.

Coria, who turned 17 on Monday and has a laundry list of past criminal charges in Indiana that all have been dismissed, was charged as an adult due to the severity of the crimes.
He and cousins Jose and Jesus Coria broke into three homes and stole more than $1,000-worth of property in September of last year. Stolen items included computers, diamond earrings and other jewelry.

Jesus was sentenced last week to two years probation and 364 days in jail, while Jose received a three-year probation sentence and one year in jail.

“This completes the triumvirate of criminal activity,” prosecutor Victor Fitz said.

Defense attorney James Miller reminded the judge that Coria is still young enough to be rehabilitated and asked for a sentence similar to his co-defendants.

After sentencing Coria, Dodge reminded the teen that if he violates probation, he would assuredly find himself in prison.

Coria also has an impending sentencing in Indiana for home invasion.

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