Break-in defendant must pay $1,000 in restitution

Cary Ashby • Jun 8, 2013 at 8:07 PM

A New London break-in defendant was ordered to pay $1,000 in restitution Thursday for helping her accomplice break into the male victim's rental property.

Erica L. Trushel, 42, of 23 Westwood Drive, has a 60-day jail sentence hanging over her head, which her probation officer can impose at any time without a court hearing.

In late April, Trushel pleaded guilty to breaking and entering. Defense attorney Tom Freeman said the only thing that was stolen was a bag of coins, but he didn't have any information about a reportedly stolen bracelet.

As part of the plea deal in April, prosecutors dismissed a second breaking-and-entering charge. The felony is in connection with an Aug. 17 incident at a Cleveland Road business.

Trushel's accomplice and one-time boyfriend, Kevin J. Loyer, 36, of Norwalk, is serving a two-year prison term for theft of a firearm.

Authorities have said Trushel was present when Loyer stole a firearm from "someone who trusted him" and "grew up in his home." Loyer later sold the gun to one of Trushel's relatives.

"We think these are drug-related offenses she's been involved in," Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler said in court Thursday.

Before Thursday's sentencing hearing, Trushel had attended 11 to 12 substance abuse-related counseling sessions and got a job.

"I do regret what I've done," she said about the crimes. "I've made a lot of mistakes. ... I've hurt my kids."

Leffler has theorized Trushel was "driving around while (Loyer went) in stealing stuff for their drug habit." About the firearm theft, he said it's possible Trushel was there to distract the victim while Loyer, who earlier asked the person to use the bathroom, stole the gun.

Trushel is on probation through Rocky River Municipal Court for one count each of possession of drug abuse instruments and criminal mischief. Court records indicate the respective offenses happened Oct. 2 and Dec. 7 in the city of Westlake.

If she violates her three years of local probation, which includes random drug screens, Trushel faces one year in prison.

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