4 years for Great Barrington man who stole from his grandmother, others


PITTSFIELD >> A Great Barrington man has been sentenced to up to four years in prison for a series of break-ins and robberies last summer in South Berkshire homes — including his grandmother's.

James W. Morrison, 24, admitted to breaking into homes and taking cash, jewelry and, in one case, a credit card. He acknowledged stealing about $16,000 worth of items from his grandmother's home alone.

In a prepared statement read in court by First Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Paul Caccaviello, Morrison's grandmother expressed sympathy for the other victims. She said Morrison had been given multiple opportunities to turn his life around and, "squandered every one of them."

Despite being "heartbroken," the woman said it was time for her grandson to take accountability for his actions.

"He needs to wake up," she wrote.

Caccaviello estimated the total amount of cash and goods stolen at over $20,000 and said Morrison's drug addiction was a "great motivator" for the crimes, which occurred July 31, Aug. 14, Aug. 24, and Sept. 15.

He sold much of the jewelry and used the credit card to purchase gas and about $700 worth of items at K-Mart.

Morrison was linked to the crimes through surveillance video of him using the stolen credit card, pawn shop records showing the sale of items reported stolen, and a fingerprint left behind in one of the affected homes, Caccaviello said.

He pleaded guilty in Berkshire Superior Court on Tuesday to four counts each of daytime felony breaking and entering and larceny over $250 and one count each of larceny over $250 from a person 60 years of age or older, fraudulent use of a credit card, misuse of a credit card and credit card fraud under $250.

Judge John Agostini sentenced Morrison to 2 1/2 to 4 years in the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction. He was given credit for 184 days of time already served in custody.

Contact Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249.


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