VALPARAISO | A 28-year-old Valparaiso man was sentenced Tuesday to eight years behind bars after pleading guilty to burglarizing the home of a deputy prosecutor.
Johnathan Schroeder has already served 225 days and can complete the sentence in half the time with good behavior and participation in prison programs.
He was also ordered to pay $1,000 in restitution as part of the plea agreement that was accepted by Porter Circuit Court Judge Mary Harper.
Schroeder apologized Tuesday and said he could not imagine what it feels like to have a stranger going through his personal belongings.
He said he plans to turn his life around and be a better father.
"I do not want my son to grow up without a father," Schroeder said.
The deputy prosecutor said she noticed a rear garage door ajar when she returned home from work May 7, according to police. She then found numerous items missing, including a computer, Nintendo Wii game and controllers, games, a Kindle Touch and a camcorder.
A break in the case came a day later when the Kindle Touch had been re-registered, police said. Officers spoke to that person, who said she purchased the Kindle from someone else, who in turn received it from a woman who lived with Schroeder.
The sentence was based in part on Schroeder's prior criminal history, which includes 13 separate arrests resulting in one felony and four misdemeanor convictions, according to the court.