Two offenders at the Nebraska Department of Corrections Work Ethic Camp in McCook who allegedly stole a pickup after absconding from the camp were sentenced to prison Monday in Red Willow County District Court.
Peter P. Payton, 30 and Charles Meister, 20, were both sentenced to the WEC from Sidney in Cheyenne County. According to court documents, both walked away from the Work Ethic Camp on a rainy night Oct. 12 at about 8:20 p.m. and broke into the cab of a semi trailer parked at at Midwest Livestock Sale Barn. After taking a scanner and CDs from the cab, they changed their wet coats with coats hanging on a rack inside the sale barn and took keys laying on the counter that belonged to a 2005 pickup parked outside.
Payton and Meister took off in the pickup and left the area. Following a crash in Beaver County, Okla., that sent one to the hospital, both were both apprehended.
Both were charged in District Court with theft by unlawful taking, a Class III felony and criminal mischief, a Class IV felony. In plea agreements, Payton and Meister both pleaded guilty to theft by unlawful taking with the second charge dismissed.
They were sentenced to two to five years with the Nebraska Department of Corrections.
Also seen in District Court Monday was Matthew D. Gilbert, 22, of Culbertson, who was charged with a Class III felony burglary after he allegedly broke into Smoker's Outlet in McCook in November. In a plea agreement, Gilbert pleaded guilty and sentencing is set for June 8 at 1 p.m.