LISBON - A Salineville man accused of helping two others break into a disabled man's garage and steal items for scrap pleaded guilty in Columbiana County Common Pleas Court Tuesday to breaking and entering, theft and an unrelated charge of failure to comply with the orders of a police officer.
According to court documents, Derek Barnhart, 38, Hull Road, Salineville, trespassed into the garage of Roland Riggle, West Water Street, Salineville, on Sept. 29, 2011. Assistant County Prosecutor Tammie Riley Jones said Riggle's sister discovered the garage had been broken into and a long list of items were taken, including a forklift. Additionally, an antique stove, riding lawn mower, other lawn mowers, propane and gas tanks and miscellaneous vehicle parts, metal parts and tools were taken.
In an unrelated charge, court documents state on June 18, 2012, Barnhart drove a 1994 Ford pickup to elude Adam Little, a police officer in Salineville. Instead of stopping at Little's signal, Barnhart continued at a high rate of speed for another 8.6 miles, while crossing into oncoming traffic and passing on a blind curve.
Jones pointed out the traffic chase happened during the late afternoon hours when there was a substantial risk of injuries to other drivers.
Following Barnhart offering the pleas to the charges, Judge C. Ashley Pike ordered a pre-sentencing investigation including with the Eastern Ohio Correctional Center. Barnhart is scheduled for sentencing on April 8.