Judge sentences Franklin County woman who confessed to being look-out in burglaries

Over $11k ordered in restitution to victims

By Ashley Bunton - abunton@aimmediamidwest.com

A Franklin County woman was convicted on two cases in Fayette County after admitting to being a look-out in a string of burglaries this year.

Shawna E. Nelson, 26, appeared Monday in the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas; she’d been held in the Fayette County Jail since June. With 140 days of local jail time credit, Nelson accepted a jointly-recommended plea and nine-year prison sentence to charges of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a first-degree felony, and burglary, a third-degree felony.

In court the charges were discussed in two separate cases.

In the first case, Nelson was convicted of three counts of third-degree burglary, one count for each of the three victims named in the case. The three burglaries resulted in losses of more than $10,000 to the victims, according to the Fayette County Prosecutor’s Office. For each charge Nelson received a two-year prison sentence to run concurrently with the second case. Nelson received nine years in prison for the second case, for engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity.

According to incident reports filed with the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, Nelson and a second person, identified as Harvey L. Lowry, 31, burglarized three homes in the county.

The first burglary was reported at a house on Harrison Road in Mt. Sterling May 25. Homeowners in Bloomingburg soon reported burglaries, the first occurring four days later on State Route 38 and the second on Washington Waterloo Road May 31. Items reported missing included a television, prescription medication, a case of bullets, and jewelry items valued at over $3,000, and a loose cut diamond ring valued at nearly $5,000.

Sheriff’s office detectives lifted fingerprints from the residences to be sent to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation. Reports state rocks were thrown through windows to gain access inside the homes.

Lowry, from Washington C.H., was sentenced Oct. 30 to 17 years in prison for his involvement in the burglaries.

According to Fayette County Prosecutor Jess Weade, Lowry entered the residences during the burglaries while Nelson stayed outside.

“She served as a look-out,” Weade said during the hearing Monday.

Nelson’s defense attorney, Robert Krapenc, told Fayette County Court of Common Pleas Judge Steven Beathard that he had had a lot of time to discuss the case with Nelson prior to entering into the plea and sentence agreement in court.

“She has shown genuine remorse for not only the situation she’s put herself in but for what she’s put her family in here in open court,” said Krapenc.

Nelson was asked if there was anything that she would like to say, and she stood and apologized. Beathard asked her how she was introduced to Lowry.

“I’d known him for a few years,” said Nelson. “He was my husband’s step-brother.”

Beathard ordered Nelson and Lowry to pay a total of $11,407.71 in restitution to the victims of the burglaries in the three cases.

Over $11k ordered in restitution to victims

By Ashley Bunton


Reach Ashley at (740) 313-0355 or connect on Twitter by searching Twitter.com for @ashbunton

Reach Ashley at (740) 313-0355 or connect on Twitter by searching Twitter.com for @ashbunton