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WEST JORDAN — Two men convicted of breaking into multiple elementary schools in the Canyons School District and stealing various items are on probation after pleading guilty.
Jacob Nicholas Trapp, 19, was sentenced on Thursday to 36 months of probation. Trapp pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary, a third-degree felony, under a Nov. 3 plea deal where 15 other charges, both felonies and misdemeanors, were dismissed.
Reise Elijah Jones, 20, was given the same sentence on June 14 for burglary and theft, both third-degree felonies. Judge William Kendall gave both men a prison sentence of up to five years that will be suspended as long as probation is completed successfully.
The burglaries happened in April, May and July 2021, according to charging documents, which said the two men broke into Sprucewood Elementary, Lone Peak Elementary, Park Lane Elementary, Eastmont Middle School, Altara Elementary and Sunrise Elementary. Charging documents said Trapp and Jones took Chromebook laptops, a 3D printer, large stuffed bears, teacher name plates and other items.
Trapp's attorney, Mallorie Goguen, asked the judge to modify the charges to Class A misdemeanors at the sentencing, citing his young age and lack of prior criminal history. At the time of the thefts, Trapp was 18.
"He is genuinely a good kid," she said. She expressed that she does not want to see her client stuck with a felony label as he begins adulthood.
Salt Lake County deputy attorney Melanie Serassio said although Trapp does not have previous criminal history, these thefts were calculated — including the men entering by rappelling through the ceiling, and it happening in at least four instances.
"These were pretty calculated burglaries," she said. "It wasn't like he just went in the door."
Serassio said prosecutors offered the same agreement to both defendants, which included the charges being modified to misdemeanors after probation is completed. She said this provides additional motivation for Trapp to complete probation and pay any required restitution money.
Goguen said Trapp's parents would hold him accountable and she has no concerns about him completing the probation and paying restitution.
Although Kendall said Goguen presented some good arguments in favor of reducing the charges, the judge chose to keep the charges at a felony level until probation is completed, citing the benefit of ensuring the sentences for both defendants are the same and the number of serious offenses involved in the case.