AUBURN | William Jones Jr. said he wasn't the architect behind a March robbery that left the victim of a home-invasion-style robbery bruised and battered. He said he simply tagged along.
In exchange for a promised sentence of two to six years in prison, Jones detailed Tuesday morning in Cayuga County Court the part he played in one burglary and one robbery in Auburn this year.
The 26-year-old Auburn man admitted he was aware his three co-defendants planned to break into a residence in an Auburn apartment complex and forcibly steal the inhabitant's money when he agreed to accompany them on the robbery on March 21.
"The idea was to go in there and take the safe and get out with it," Jones said.
Although Jones admitted he had no permission to enter the residence, he said committing the crime was not his idea.
"Yeah, I'm going to be honest," Jones said."It wasn't my idea, but I was still there."
The defendant said he entered the apartment complex with his brother, Phillip Jones, Edward "E" Hoisington and Hoisington's girlfriend. After Hoisington kicked down a man's door, Jones said the group entered the apartment and subdued its resident.
Then, Jones said the situation turned violent.
"(Hoisington's girlfriend) was beating the Mexican up, just punching him in the face," he said.
After assaulting the man, Jones said the woman went into one of the apartment's back rooms and returned with "a lot" of money. He said his co-defendants then handed him $35 and left.
Less than two months later, Jones said the group attempted to steal from another resident living in the same apartment complex. However, when Hoisington kicked opened the door on May 7, Jones said an occupant chased the group away with a knife.
Explaining that his client had "cognitive limitations" and was currently taking anti-psychotics and anti-depressants, defense attorney Douglas Bates reiterated that Jones was not the mastermind behind the crimes.
"It's always been my understanding that Mr. Jones was a recruit," Bates said. "This was not hatched of his own imagination."
District Attorney Jon Budelmann said Hoisington previously pinned the blame for the robbery and the burglary on Jones in a statement to police.
After explaining his actions, Jones, of 122 S. Fulton St., pleaded guilty to two counts of third-degree burglary and one count of third-degree robbery, both felonies. He is currently housed in the Cayuga County Jail in lieu of $20,000 cash.
Also in court:
* Jared Daniels faces spending up to three years in prison after admitting he stole and used three different credit cards.
The 23-year-old Auburn man pleaded guilty to first-degree identity theft, second-degree forgery and fourth-degree grand larceny, all felonies, explaining he took credit and debit cards from houses and the YMCA in Auburn in December and April, using them to make thousands of dollars worth of unauthorized purchases.
Along with serving concurrent one to three years sentences for his each of his three convictions, Daniels, of 107 Janet St., agreed to pay $6,314.67 restitution to his victims.
* In exchange for a promised sentence of no worse than shock probation, a 37-year-old Brooklyn woman admitted to mailing more than 25 grams of marijuana to an Auburn Correctional Facility inmate.
Kimberly Davis , of 77 Tompkins Ave., apartment 12H, pleaded guilty to third-degree criminal sale of marijuana. Because the conviction marked Davis' first brush with the law, Davis may be sentenced to five years probation with the shock portion of her sentence amended to time served.