AUGUSTA — A Wayne woman who was a co-defendant in 92 burglary, theft and criminal mischief charges spanning two counties was sentenced Monday to a much shorter time in jail than the other defendant.

Rebecca Lee, 40, formerly of Madison, was accused in those crimes along with Justin Ross, 37, also of Wayne, who was sentenced recently to 10 years in prison and ordered to pay restitution of more than $75,000.

Lee was sentenced to serve an initial nine months in jail, with the remainder of the eight-year term suspended and three years’ probation. She also was ordered to pay toward the restitution of more than $75,000 as well.

In exchange for Lee’s guilty pleas to 18 burglaries and one theft, the remaining charges of burglary, theft and criminal mischief were dismissed.

The hearing in the Kennebec County Superior Court case was held at the Capital Judicial Center.

According to the indictment against both defendants, the items were reported stolen Aug. 12 through Nov. 2, 2013, from homes, camps and garages in Belgrade, Fayette, Mount Vernon, Vienna, Wayne and Winthrop in Kennebec County and in Smithfield in Somerset County. At the time of those crimes, Ross was on probation for a forgery conviction in Franklin County and had 40 months remaining on that sentence.

In November 2013, the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office filled several of its garages with merchandise recovered from Lee’s residence in Wayne, and some victims were able to recover their belongings.

At Ross’s hearing, the prosecutor, Assistant District Attorney Joelle Pratt, said she anticipated a significantly lighter sentence for Lee because of the lack of criminal record.

Conditions of probation ban Lee from use and possession of alcohol, illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia and hypodermic apparatus and set a curfew of 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. She is also prohibited from contact with 30 victims named in the indictment as well as with Ross.

Lee’s defense attorney, John O’Donnell, said after the hearing that Ross and Lee became friends in mid 2013 shortly after Ross was released from jail.

“Rebecca had no criminal record at all at that point,” O’Donnell said. “I think they started messing around with illegal drugs. He led her on this path, the path he had been on, and I think the DA understood.”

O’Donnell said Lee was very cooperative with the sheriff’s investigation.

“She spent hours helping them locate residences she had broken into. She rode with them and alerting them to many of the places they hadn’t known,” he said.

Lee is to report to jail April 20 to begin her sentence. O’Donnell said Lee sought the stay so she could try to set up work release to allow her to continue with her job and contribute to restitution.

“She’s in counseling, she’s got a young child and she’s got a full-time job,” O’Donnell said. “Hopefully she’ll fly through probation successfully and not do the eight years.”

District Attorney Maeghan Maloney said Lee has one prior misdemeanor conviction.

“Her sentence was lighter than her co-defendant’s because of his long criminal record, and the burglaries could not have been solved without her assistance,” Maloney said. “She participated in 22 hours of working with law enforcement to assist them in solving open cases.”

Maloney said Lee apologized to the victims and told the judge, “I knew I was stealing things, but I never realized I was stealing something intangible. I never realized I was taking people’s peace of mind, and I can’t give that back.”

At a separate hearing also on Monday at the Capital Judicial Center, Bobbi Sue Trask, 28, of Brooks and formerly of Knox, was sentenced to 30 months in jail with all but seven days suspended and two years’ probation for an assault that occurred April 18, 2014, in Augusta.

Trask was originally charged with aggravated assault, but that charge was dismissed, and in January, a jury in Kennebec County Superior Court cleared her of domestic violence assault against her sister, but convicted her of assaulting her mother. All the charges were related to the same incident. Trask was also fined $300.

Conditions of probation require Trask to undergo a mental health evaluation and counseling if indicated.

Two other people were sentenced recently in Kennebec County Superior Court:

• Edwell D. Gethers, 36, of Waterville, domestic violence assault May 13, 2014, and violating conditions of release Aug. 12, 2014, both in Waterville; three-year jail sentence, with all but seven months suspended (credit for seven months served), two years’ probation.

• Maria Weston, 49, of Fitchburg, Mass., unlawful possession of cocaine base July 10, 2014, in Waterville; 120 days in jail, $400 fine, $120 restitution.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams


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