Multiple Convictions Lead
to Prison Sentence
On July 3, 2012, Brenda A. Babbitt committed Retail Theft, a
class 3 felony, by stealing over $300 worth of items for sale from
Walmart. On March 15, 2013, Brenda A. Babbitt committed Retail
Theft, a class 4 felony, by stealing items for sale from Walmart.
Lincoln Police Officer Miles Craig investigated both cases in
conjunction with loss prevention specialists from Walmart. As a
result of Officer Craig's investigation, Brenda A. Babbitt pled
guilty to each charge of Retail Theft and requested a sentencing
Brenda A. Babbitt also committed Unlawful Possession of a
Controlled Substance, a class 4 felony. On May 12, 2013, Lincoln
Police Sgt. James Rehmann investigated a suspicious vehicle in the
parking lot of CVS. Brenda A. Babbitt was a passenger in the vehicle
along with the driver and one other passenger. Upon approach to the
vehicle, the driver fled on foot. Sgt. Rehmann continued the
investigation on scene while other officers were dispatched to
pursue the driver. Sgt. Rehmann located a baggie on the person of
Brenda A. Babbitt which contained a substance testing positive for
the presence of heroin. As a result of Sgt. Rehmann's investigation,
Brenda A. Babbitt pled guilty to Unlawful Possession of a Controlled
Substance and asked for a sentencing hearing.
On March 6, 2014, the Court held a sentencing hearing on all
three felony offenses. Logan County State's Attorney Jonathan Wright
recommended a combined sentence of 8 years in the Illinois
Department of Corrections. After hearing all the evidence and
arguments, the Honorable William Yoder sentenced Brenda A. Babbitt
to 2 years on each of the Retail Theft convictions and 4 years on
the conviction for Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance.
Due to the timing of the commission of the offenses, each prison
sentence runs consecutive to the other for a total of 8 years in the
Illinois Department of Corrections.
"The Court weighed all the factors in aggravation and mitigation
in arriving at this sentence but I believe two factors were
important in arriving at this sentence," stated Logan County State's
Attorney Jonathan Wright. "First, the Court noted Ms. Babbitt's
significant criminal history – nine prior felony convictions and
eight prior misdemeanor convictions. Second, the Court noted that
Ms. Babbitt was in possession of heroin, a controlled substance that
has had devastating effects on this community."
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Prison Sentence for Theft
On March 6, 2014, Samuel L. Cottrill entered into a fully
negotiated plea agreement with the Logan County State's Attorneys'
Office. Samuel Cottrill was charged in Logan County Case number
13-CF-223 with one count of Burglary and one count of felony Theft.
Mr. Cottrill pled guilty to Theft, a class 3 felony, and the State,
as part of the agreement, dismissed the allegation of Burglary. Mr.
Cottrill was then sentenced to 3 years in the Illinois Department of
Corrections. The conviction is a result of the investigation of
Logan County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Anderson. On October 21, 2013,
items were reported stolen from 303 W. Front Street, Hartsburg,
Illinois, an addressed to which Mr. Cottrill was paroled. Based upon
information of Mr. Cottrill's vehicle, Deputy Burdick and Cpl.
Kuhlman were able to apprehend Mr. Cottrill and recover the stolen
items later that same date.
Jonathan C. Wright
Logan County State's Attorney
March 7, 2014
[Text copied from file received from
State's Attorney Jonathan C. Wright]