A Bluewell, West Virginia, man who pleaded guilty to participating in two armed robberies has been handed a 50-year prison sentence.
Joshua Short, 35, admitted his involvement in the crimes during a plea hearing in September and was sentenced on Nov. 2 by Judge Derek Swope, the Bluefield Telegraph reported.
The 50-year sentence was the longest Swope could have issued for the two crimes of first degree armed robbery. Each offense carries a maximum sentence of 25 years, and he ruled they should run consecutively.
Short and Larry Patrick Jr. reportedly broke into an elderly man’s home on Oct. 16, attacked him, and stole a .38 caliber handgun.
Patrick is currently being held in Virginia, the Telegraph reported in a separate article. Assistant Prosecuting Attorney John McGinnis stated that West Virginia authorities are attempting to have Patrick returned to the state to face charges for his part in the crime against the World War II veteran.
Short was also involved two days later in robbing the Arrowhead Delhi at gunpoint. Short allegedly fired a shot during the incident, before removing the cash register from the store.
The owner estimated that Short made off with over $1,000 on that occasion.
"This is the second time, and we believe it's by the same person," Ali, the store owner, told WVNS at the time. "The way he acts, the way he was coming, we believe it's the same person. He came with the gun and told the clerks you know the routine."
A third robbery charge for a home break-in is pending in Virginia against Short, according to the Telegraph. McGinnis explained that the plea deal struck in West Virginia would permit authorities to pursue the charge in the neighboring state.
Swope recommended in court that any sentence issued in Virginia should run consecutively with time served in West Virginia, and he also advised against Short being granted parole.