Schenectady County

2nd burglary sends Schenectady man to prison

An unhappy acting Schenectady County Court Judge Richard Giardino attempted to explain the situation

An unhappy acting Schenectady County Court Judge Richard Giardino attempted to explain the situation to the young man standing before him.

Defendant Duane Oates had been looking at the possibility of six months in local jail, and youthful offender status, for his role in a September 2010 home invasion in Rotterdam.

“You had a good deal going,” Giardino told Oates.

But that deal evaporated once Oates, 18, was arrested again, this past September, on another burglary charge.

That arrest came as Oates remained free pending sentencing in the first burglary case. It also came the week he was to be sentenced. That first sentencing was postponed and he has been held in jail since his most recent arrest.

“You understand you really jammed yourself up?” Giardino asked Oates.

Oates indicated he understood.

Instead of the possible six months of local jail time, Oates is to get two years in state prison in one case and one to three years in the other, to run at the same time, under a plea arrangement.

Oates pleaded guilty Monday to one count of third-degree burglary, a felony, in connection with the September 2011 break-in.

In that case, Oates and a co-defendant were accused of going into the cellar of an occupied Devine Street home Sept. 2 and causing an estimated $5,000 in damage, authorities have said.

The two were there to take copper pipe and were found by police a short distance from the home, in possession of the pipe, prosecutors have said. The house is a two-family home, prosecutors have said, and the second floor was occupied while the first floor was vacant.

In the September 2010 case, Oates was accused of being one of two people to break into a Rotterdam home, an incident termed a home invasion. Oates ultimately pleaded guilty to second-degree attempted burglary, with the promise of local jail time.

His co-defendant was sentenced to 5.5 years in state prison, a sentence that reflected other burglaries he had committed.

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