New Castle News

September 13, 2012

Home invasion suspect pleads, is sentenced

Nancy Lowry
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — A Detroit man charged in a Union Township home invasion will spend up to 15 years in the penitentiary.

Jamal Lamarr Mock Sr., 24, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit robbery and cruelty to animals. Lawrence County Judge J. Craig Cox sentenced Wednesday him to five to 15 years in a state correctional facility, with credit for 271 days served.

After he is paroled, he is to have no contact with the victims and is ordered to pay costs of prosecution and provide a DNA sample.

On the cruelty to animal charge, for shooting a victim’s dog, Kingston, Mock was sentenced to one to two years in a state correctional institution with credit for 271 days served. This is to be served concurrently with the previous sentence.

A trial began Monday for Mock, who had been charged with five counts of recklessly endangering another person and one count each of aggravated assault, burglary, robbery, theft, simple assault, conspiracy to commit robbery and killing a domestic animal.

A jury was selected by Tom Minett, assistant district attorney, and John Bongivengo, court-appointed defense attorney.

Both attorneys made opening remarks and Minett presented two witnesses. However, on Tuesday, Mock agreed to enter a guilty plea.

Attorneys met with Lawrence County District Attorney Joshua Lamancusa, Trooper Harry Gustafson of the Pennsylvania state police, and victims and families of the victims of the home invasion, which took place Dec. 15.

According to court records, Mock and De’andre McQueen, 16, also of Detroit, burst into a house at 1205 Sunny Ave.

Police said the occupants had been threatened by two men with handguns who had demanded money and pistol-whipped a 17-year-old, striking him in the head with a handgun that discharged.

Officers said Mock went upstairs and confronted residents there, demanding money, shooting their dog and firing a rifle found downstairs.

Witnesses told police McQueen went upstairs and informed Mock he had shot two people downstairs.

Brent Bissett, 20, and Corey Coblentz, 18, both of Union Township, were shot. Coblentz — shot in the neck, shoulder and left arm — was in court Wednesday and said he agreed with terms of the sentence, as did two other victims.

Bissett was critically injured, shot in the head, hand and forearm. Following a hospital stay, he has been released to his family. His father, Wade, said he was in agreement with Mock’s guilty plea and sentencing.

Following the sentencing, Minett reminded the victims and their families, “We’re only half way through this. There is still another (trial) with more serious charges. We will go through this again in a couple of months.”

He said McQueen is attempting to have his case moved to juvenile court. A hearing has been scheduled for mid-October, Minett said.

McQueen, charged as an adult, faces two counts of attempted homicide, aggravated and simple assault and one count each of burglary, robbery, theft and conspiracy to commit robbery in the home invasion.

He also is charged with criminal homicide, aggravated and simple assault, possession of instruments of crime and recklessly endangering another person in the Dec. 3, 2011, fatal shooting of Eric Staller, who was found on Locust Street.