WARREN - A Niles woman will spend at least seven years behind bars after she and her husband left their two small children in the back seat of their car while they went on a crime spree in January in Girard.
Nicole M. Burchell, 27, 36 Franklin St., was sentenced this morning after pleading guilty in May to a four-count indictment that included two counts of burglary, a count of endangering children and a charge of petty theft that assistant prosecutor Chris Becker said stemmed from Burchell breaking into her own brother's car to steal money. She also was found with a loaded .38 caliber handgun stolen from one of the homes.
She remained in Trumbull County Jail in lieu of $50,000 bond since her arrest Jan. 10. Her husband, Jacob, 28, is facing similar charges.
The couple was arrested after Girard police answered a burglary in progress call at 863 Lawrence Ave. A neighbor told police that a man and woman kicked in the rear door of the residence and backed a car into the driveway.
The first patrolman on the scene blocked the driveway and the car - a brownish 2001 Chrysler Sebring, police said.
The patrolman heard banging on the first floor. He moved to the rear of the house and spotted the woman standing in the kitchen, the report states.
After the officer heard both voices in the kitchen, he went in. As he rounded a corner, he saw the man place something into the kitchen garbage can, the report states.
Jacob Burchell told officers that he was at the residence to do a plumbing job for the man who lives there, the report states. However, the neighbor told police that the homeowner was a woman.
The children were found by an officer walking up the driveway and turned over to a relative by police.
Read the complete story in Thursday's Tribune Chronicle and at tribtoday.com.