A 17-year-old Norwalk boy admitted Friday to burglarizing Cold as Ice while intoxicated.
The former Monroeville resident told Huron County Juvenile Court Judge Timothy Cardwell he went to an unlocked North Street garage between Dec. 19 and 20 and, within two hours, drank the seven to eight beers he stole.
He said he next went to the closed drive-thru and broke a garage door window using a brick he found in a nearby yard. Huron County Juvenile Prosecutor Jennifer DeLand estimated the suspect stole $5,100 worth of merchandise.
The boy admitted he took between $300 and $400 in cash, several packets of lottery tickets and put 20 cigarette cartons and packs into two plastic bags he brought with him as well as his pants pockets.
Cardwell asked why he committed the offenses.
"Pretty much I got drunk and I wasn't thinking clearly. If I wasn't drunk, I wouldn't have (gone to) Cold as Ice," the boy said.
"I guess it was knowing the other kids did it ... knowing I could get away with it," he said.
The boy's mother called the Monroeville Police Department after she discovered the stolen items in her home.
"He's being good," she said when Cardwell asked about how her son was doing on electronically-monitored house arrest. "He's asked to go a few places and I've said 'No.' He's still under punishment."
The boy was convicted of burglary, a third-degree felony if committed by an adult, theft, a fifth-degree felony, and underage consumption, a first-degree misdemeanor.
In exchange, the state dismissed charges of breaking and entering, tampering with evidence and theft.
Cardwell sentenced the boy to probation, but suspended a commitment to the Department of Youth Services if he violates his community control sanctions. The judge also ordered him to undergo a substance abuse assessment and follow through with any subsequent recommendations.
"It all boils down to alcohol," DeLand said prior to Cardwell's ruling, also saying the boy "made some very bad decisions that day."
The prosecutor has a March 7 deadline to determine the value and restitution for the recovered items. The lottery tickets and cigarettes could be resold if the expiration dates are valid.
Cardwell ordered the boy to write letters of apology to the Monroeville homeowner and Cold as Ice manager. He also must find employment through the Job Store of Huron County Department of Job & Family Services. The judge emphasized the need to obtain employment in order to be "financially responsible for what happened."