A Madison Heights man who took part in a series of burglaries that hit the University of Lynchburg area and left several people missing cars and electronics will serve three years in prison.

Matthew Lucas Creasy, 20, pleaded guilty in August to grand larceny, grand theft auto and two counts of burglary alongside his co-defendant, Shyheim Monte Hamlett. Hamlett was sentenced to five years in prison for six similar charges, plus another year for violating his probation.

Creasy took the stand at his sentencing hearing in Lynchburg Circuit Court Wednesday to say he didn’t know Hamlett or Shawn Rose, their third co-defendant, until about two weeks before they started raiding cars and homes around Oakley Avenue and the University of Lynchburg.

At the time, Creasy said he was sleeping outside, sitting on the street and spending $50 to $60 per day on methamphetamine. If given the opportunity, he said he’d apologize to the victims.

He added he wants to take advantage of programs in prison and seek a trade degree, but acknowledged he doesn’t have a set plan after incarceration besides needing to live in a halfway house.

“I do want to be a functioning member of society,” he said.

Prosecutor Kelsey Brown said the burglaries in Lynchburg were the latest in a string of similar incidents in Nelson and Amherst counties, starting in August and continuing through the fall and winter. Creasy received a suspended sentence Monday in Amherst Circuit Court for breaking into and stealing from a grocery store, and was sentenced in August to a total of two years and two months of prison in Nelson County on similar charges, court records indicate.

Brown pointed out Creasy had a significant number of victims and asked Judge Ed Burnette to sentence him to 4½ years in prison.

Defense attorney Paul Valois called sentencing guidelines for his client “excessive” and asked Burnette not to add any more time on top of Creasy’s sentence from Nelson County.

“He’s a young man who’s gotten himself into a very bad situation,” he said.

Burnette sentenced Creasy to an active three years in prison on top of Creasy’s sentence from his Nelson County convictions. After he’s released, he’ll be on supervised probation for more than a year and need to be of good behavior for five years.

Rose, the third defendant in the case, is scheduled for an Oct. 28 trial.

Rachel Mahoney covers courts for The News & Advance. Reach her at (434) 385-5554.

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Rachel Mahoney covers courts for The News & Advance. Reach her at (434) 385-5554.

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