Thursday, October 30, 2008

Teen faces prison for pot robbery

Youth allegedly breaks into woman's home, takes her medicinal marijuana at knife-point

By Mark Freeman
Mail Tribune
October 30, 2008 6:00 AM

A Central Point teenager faces more than seven years in prison for allegedly breaking into a Medford home early Sunday and robbing a woman of her medical marijuana at knifepoint, authorities said.

Ethan Taylor Sartin, 16, was scheduled to be arraigned Thursday in Jackson County Circuit Court on charges of first-degree robbery and first-degree burglary, and prosecutors said Wednesday they will try him in court as an adult.

"It's because he's 16 years old and the seriousness of the crime," said Beth Heckert, chief deputy district attorney in Jackson County.

The robbery charge carries, upon conviction, a mandatory minimum sentence of 71/2; years in prison under Oregon's Measure 11 minimum-sentencing law.

Sartin was arrested Tuesday without incident at his Truax Road home and he remained detained today by Jackson County Juvenile Department authorities, police said.

Sartin is accused of wearing a cloth over his face while breaking through a rear sliding-glass door early Sunday and entering a residence on the 700 block of West Second Street in Medford, police said.

Sartin allegedly used a folding knife to threaten the woman, and stole between one ounce and two ounces of marijuana that the 54-year-old woman legally had for medicinal purposes, Medford police Lt. Mike Budreau said today.

The robber, who was described as a young and thin white male, ran off, police said.

Investigators interviewed witnesses who were familiar with the woman and her home, and eventually they were led to Sartin, Budreau said.

The knife believed to be used in the robbery had not been found as of this afternoon, Budreau said.

The victim reported the robbery to police at 1:53 a.m. Sunday, police said.

The same woman called police an hour earlier saying that she noticed a suspicious person in her backyard, but officers were unable to locate that person after the initial call, police said.

Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 776-4470, or e-mail

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