CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A Pinch man pleaded guilty to robbing and beating an elderly neighbor in February.
Aaron E. Chapman, 22, entered into a plea agreement with prosecutors prior to being indicted by a grand jury. Kanawha Circuit Judge Jennifer Bailey accepted that plea Wednesday and ordered Chapman convicted of first-degree robbery and malicious wounding, both felonies.
He was arrested, along with Casey Givens, 21, of Elkview, for robbing and brutally beating Ramona Jones, 74, and attempting to rob Frank Mace, 59. Both are Chapman's neighbors.
In his plea hearing, Chapman told the judge Mace was "a neighbor and family friend my whole life."
But he said he was under the influence of drugs the night of Feb. 27 when he and Givens attempted to rob those two neighbors.
"I was looking for things I could get money for," Chapman said. "I did do that crime. I did strike her with my hands and left the premises and went back to my house."
Assistant Prosecutor Dan Holstein said the injuries suffered by Jones were severe.
"There was a significant amount of violence," Holstein said. "With Casey Givens, in the kitchen, they took her purse and pushed her down on the floor and kicked her.
"She had significant injuries," Holstein said. "Broken ribs, collapsed lungs, a broken clavicle, bruises and lacerations to her whole body. She had hemorrhaging in her head.
"She was threatened by this defendant with a knife, and there was an impression left in her chest -- some object had been pressed against her," he said.