A man found guilty of burglary of a building in February learned his punishment Monday in the 266th Judicial District Court.
Kenneth Wayne Laws, 42, opted out of a jury trial and decided to place his fate in the hands of Judge Don Jones. On Monday, Laws and his attorney Andrew Ottoway struck a deal with the state, which allows him to keep his job, while the state keeps a close eye on him.
Jones ordered Laws to serve two years in a state jail facility, the maximum penalty for the offense. The sentence was probated for a period of five years.
Laws was also ordered to spend 20 days in the county jail, to be served over several weekends; pay more that $3,500 in fines and penalties; and complete 300 hours of community service. In accepting the agreement, Laws waived his right to appeal.
In reading the sentence, Jones said he had reviewed the case file since finding the defendant guilty on Feb. 25, including a pre-sentence investigation report from the probation office, to familiarize himself with Laws’ criminal history. Jones said Laws’ admitted drug problems were cause for concern. Jones said the probationary agreement would also be contingent on Laws submitting to random drug evaluations since he had allegedly used methamphetamine only weeks earlier.
“I’m concerned about the drug use,” Jones said. “I’m not going to let you use drugs and stay on probation. You need to avoid any possession or use of controlled substances.”
If Laws violates any of the conditions, he faces having his probation revoked and more time behind bars.