ITHACA, N.Y. – A Savona woman was sentenced Tuesday morning in Tompkins County Jail after her arrest for stealing several backpacks from Cornell University students.
Cornell Police arrested a Steuben County duo in March after surveillance videos caught them stealing several unattended backpacks from students in campus libraries on March 16. April Mace, 31, who was accompanied for the thefts by Richard Huyler, 39, was sentenced on Tuesday for her charges related to the crime.
According to Cornell Police, over 100 stolen items were later recovered after the arrest of Mace and Huyler. Police reports say between cash, bank cards, computers, electronics and other valuables, the stolen property amounted to over $12,000.
The two were arrested at The Hotel Ithaca after a student’s stolen debit card linked police to the pair, who allegedly used the card to stay in a $336 room at the hotel.
Deputy District Attorney Andrew Bonavia, who prosecuted the case, said Mace was on probation for an earlier felony charge from 2015 at the time of the thefts.
“These crimes were a result of drug dependency,” Bonavia said. “However, she was supervised at this time – she was on probation. She had options available to her, and she has to start taking advantage of these options.”
Mace acknowledged her history with substance abuse in the courtroom and told her attorney, Russell Maines, and Judge Joseph Cassidy that she was ready to move forward with the sentencing.
“I have lied for 31 years and this is the first time in my life that I want to take responsibility,” Mace said. “I can’t live this life anymore – I want to do better, and I will take whatever you give me today and turn it into something good.”
Mace was charged with three counts of fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and one count of fourth-degree grand larceny.
“You acknowledge that you have a substance abuse problem, and I understand you are a long time victim of domestic violence,” Cassidy said. “That indicates to me that you should seek help for that.”
Cassidy sentenced Mace to a 1 1/2 -3-year incarceration on each charge, which will be served concurrently at Willard Drug Treatment Center.