A Lansford man pleaded guilty in Carbon County court on Tuesday to six criminal counts after previously entering pleas in three other cases, and was immediately sentenced to a state prison term. He also faces a big restitution bill.
John Elvin Bartenope, 34, pleaded guilty to two burglary, three of receiving stolen property and one theft charge. His appearance before President Judge Roger N. Nanovic II was for sentencing on three other criminal counts he had previously pleaded to, one each of theft, receiving stolen property and possession of drug paraphernalia. He then pleaded to the six additional charges before being sentenced on all nine counts.
Nanovic sentenced him to serve a total of one to two years in a state prison followed by two years of state probation on all counts. The prison term runs consecutive to a one to two year state prison term Bartenope is currently serving which was imposed in Schuylkill County in June 2011.
Bartenope was also ordered to make total restitution to various victims of $36,204.02.
Police charged Bartenope with breaking into vehicles and storage facilities and stealing power tools and other items. Most of the incidents occurred at a storage facility in Nesquehoning, but some of the charges also involved incidents in Jim Thorpe and Lansford.
One victim, Beth Ann Dennis, told Nanovic that Bartenope stole tools and truck parts used by her husband, George Dennis, in their business. She said, "It took our dream away." She said the theft of over 80 truck parts shut down their business and caused them thousands of dollars in lost parts and income. Her total restitution for the losses suffered was over $27,000. She said only 10 truck parts out of the 80 taken were recovered.
Bartenope blamed his crime spree on an addiction to heroin, which he said he had for over 15 years. He said being arrested and placed in prison "saved my life."
Bartenope said he stole constantly to feed his drug habit. He said it ruined his marriage.
He told Nanovic he had attended every program available in prison to help with his addiction problem.
Nanovic said the prison term was warranted considering what the defendant had done. He also told Mrs. Dennis that getting restitution from the defendant is something she should count on because of the large amount owed to several victims.
Nanovic also ordered Bartenope to get both drug and alcohol and mental health evaluations and follow any recommendations for treatment, zero tolerance imposed on D&A use, supply a DNA sample and pay the $250 fee, pay court costs, which average about $1,000, and pay a $50 per month supervision fee when out on parole and/or probation. He was given credit for 128 days spent in jail on the charges.