A homeless man was sentenced Wednesday to one year in jail for causing over $10,000 in damages at MGM Electrical Surplus, while allegedly trying to steal copper wire.
Henry L. Dykes, 59, was caught red-handed cutting copper wires off a transformer and other equipment at the Fairfield Avenue, Niagara Falls, electrical company on Jan. 16, 2016, according to Assistant District Attorney John Philips. Dykes absconded during his court proceedings and was missing for more than two years.
Dykes, who was charged with felony criminal mischief, petit larceny and possession of burglar tools, accepted a plea offer May 2 to fourth-degree criminal mischief, a misdemeanor.
Dykes' attorney, Jenelle Messer, said Dykes' lifelong addiction to crack cocaine fueled the latest crime and a lengthy rap sheet of prior offenses.
Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon said she cannot "hold out any hope" for Dykes getting clean, as he had admitted to using crack cocaine almost daily since he was 13. "You can't or won't stop using," she said.
Sheldon handed Dykes the maximum jail sentence, which includes credit for serving six months in the county jail.