CAMBRIDGE -- Judge Charles "Casey" Stengel on Tuesday told a Tampico man he would accept a guilty plea if it included a 17-year prison sentence.
Robert Zais, 26, declined. Heis charged with two counts Class 2 felony theft, three counts Class 2 felony burglary and two counts Class 3 felony theft between last April and Aug. 13.
According to Henry County Circuit Court records, Mr. Zais and co-defendant Robert Lambert, 31, of Kewanee, allegedly stole four Gators from Holland & Son in Geneseo; an Arctic Cat utility vehicle from Mapes Asphalt in Geneseo; and several tools.
The men also allegedly broke into Annawan Express Lane in Annawan and stole an ATM containing $7,700 andbroke into People's National Bank of Kewanee in Annawan and took a safe containing rolls of coins valued at $500 to $10,000.
Henry County State's Attorney Terry Patton said the two men were stopped April 9 in Lee County pulling a trailer with one of the ATVs stolen from Holland & Son.
He said the day after the break-in at the Annawan bank, the Arctic Cat used to gain entry was found in a drainage ditch and footprints from the site matched shoes belonging to Mr. Lambert.
He said Mr. Zais' girlfriend said she overheard them talking about a bank job, and he showed her $3,200 in cash he said he won at a casino, but police learned he had not won money at the casino.
Both men remain in Henry County Jail. Mr. Zais bail was set at $400,000 and Mr. Lambert's at $250,000. Mr. Zais is scheduled for a pretrial hearing on Nov. 27.Mr. Lambert's next court date is Dec. 13.
The judge's 17-year recommendation was made at the end of a conference held to determine if charges could be resolved by a guilty plea.
Today is Saturday, Aug. 30, the 242nd day of 2014. There are 123 days left in the year.
1864 — 150 years ago: A large pair of elk, captured in Iowa, were exhibited in Market Square today. 1889 — 125 years ago: The Rock Island Arsenal dam was being constructed under the supervision of Charles Frances, of Lowell, Mass. 1914 — 100 years ago: Mrs. Frank Mixer, of Rock Island, was the winner of the final preliminary for the women's handicap golf cup at Rock Island arsenal links. 1939 — 75 years ago: Sixteen hundred persons — many from war-fearful Europe — arrived in New York aboard the German liner Bremen. For two days on the trip, passengers were cut off from the world with both incoming and outgoing radio messages banned. 1964 — 50 years ago: Police reported five youths have been involved in the theft of about seven cars in recent weeks. Three of the youths were arrested Saturday afternoon, one was in custody as the result of a previous arrest, and the fifth is expected to be arrested today. 1989 — 25 years ago: The Rock Island/Milan School Board is asking the city to tear down Franklin School and allow the school district to pay back the estimated $100,00 cost during 10 years.