Isiah Slaton learned a very valuable lesson on Monday that he already should have known.
No one messes with Hank Aaron.
Especially in Atlanta.
The 24-year-old man received a 50-year sentence — eight years in jail and 42 years of probation — after pleading guilty to burglarizing Aaron's home on July 14, 2013. Slaton and two other men allegedly made off with quite a haul from the Hall of Famer's home including rings from Aaron's baseball career, "considerable" other jewelry items and two BMWs the men later abandoned (though not before leaving fingerprints behind).
Hank and his wife Billye were in New York for the All-Star Game at the time. The three men were arrested three weeks later.
In his victim impact statement, Aaron told how he felt “violated” by the crime and how the items that were stolen from him were simply “priceless.”
Slaton pleaded guilty Monday to burglary and theft on the eve of a trial with two other men with whom he was indicted for allegedly ransacking the Aaron house on July 14, 2013 ... Hank and Billye Aaron were in New York for the All-Star Game when burglars disabled the alarm system and entered their southwest Atlanta home. Aaron missed a call from his alarm company and the next day asked a neighbor to investigate. The neighbor saw the broken window and called police.
Amir Coleman, also indicted in the burglary, will stand trial starting Tuesday. A third man, Edward Buford, has a case pending against him.
Will they also face a half-century charge like Slaton received? It seems likely they could receive that or even more with Shondeana Morris, one of Fulton County's toughest prosecutors, handling the case.
A burglary charge in Georgia carries a sentence of 1 to 20 years in prison. While Slaton's eight-year sentence isn't the max he could have received, the 42 years of probation ensures he'll be carrying the stain of stealing from a beloved 80-year-old for a long, long time.
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