One of two defendants allegedly involved in an October break-in that took place in Cloverdale entered a guilty plea to one charge in connection with the incident and will be sentenced at a later date in Putnam County Circuit Court.
Justin M. Manning, 22, of Cloverdale pled guilty to a charge of Class D felony theft Monday. In exchange, two Class C felony counts -- burglary and conspiracy to commit burglary -- against Manning will be dropped.
Manning was arrested in October after he and a co-defendant, Jared T. Robbins, 21, also of Cloverdale, allegedly broke into a neighbor's pole barn and stole two all-terrain vehicles. Manning has been in jail since in lieu of a $30,000 bond with 10 percent authorized.
"The two of us together broke into a pole barn and took two of (the victim's) four-wheelers," Manning said in court.
Manning said he and Robbins broke into the pole barn using a screwdriver, and that the four-wheeler Robbins had stopped running during the theft.
"Jared was pushing it while I rode off on the other one," Manning said.
Manning said the theft was not premeditated.
"It was just spur of the moment," he said. "We didn't plan it or nothing. We were basically just partying and having fun."
Manning told Judge Matthew Headley that he and Robbins had been drinking beer and taking Xanax when they stole the ATVs, and that they likely would have tried to sell the four-wheelers if they had not been caught.
Manning is currently on probation in Hendricks County, and his court-appointed attorney Melinda Jackman-Hanlin said she and her client "fully expect the court there will reinstate the balance of that sentence." Headley ordered Manning held in the Putnam County Jail until Hendricks County comes for him. At that time, Headley said, Manning will be ordered to come back to Putnam County, where he will be sentenced.
The maximum jail sentence for a Class D felony is three years.
As part of the plea agreement, Manning also agreed to cooperate in the prosecution of Robbins, who has also been in jail since his arrest and has been charged with the same counts Manning was. Robbins' trial date is set for Feb. 18.