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Twin brothers get two years for burglary

Walter Littrell • Jul 14, 2007 at 12:00 AM

JONESVILLE - A pair of Lee County twin brothers were sentenced Friday in Lee County Circuit Court to two years in the Virginia State Penitentiary for their roles in a January burglary.

Thomas and Patrick Pridemore, 19, P.O. Box 101, Ewing, had been charged with breaking and entering, conspiracy and grand larceny for the burglary of the Ewing residence of John D. Godsey and his late wife.

Judge Tammy McElyea told the brothers that she found their actions in committing these crimes "very troubling" and sentenced each brother to 10 years in prison on each of the felony charges, but then suspended all but two years on each. She allowed the sentences to be served concurrently.

Additionally, McElyea sentenced Thomas Pridemore to a 12-month jail term for another petit larceny charge. This sentence was also allowed to be served concurrently.

Both will serve five years of supervised probation upon release from prison.

Commonwealth's Attorney Shawn Hines said the twins and a juvenile co-defendant targeted the Godsey residence on the night of Jan. 14 knowing that Mrs. Godsey was battling cancer. The brothers observed an ambulance at the residence taking Mrs. Godsey to the hospital that evening and knew that with her illness she would have pain medication in the house, so they decided to break in and take the medication for themselves, he said.

Hines said the trio set out toward the Godsey residence around midnight, pried open a window, and then one or more of the defendants entered the home to steal the Godseys' medication. Patrick Pridemore initially got scared and ran off but returned to the home at least one time to check on the progress of the others. Following the burglary, Thomas Pridemore and the juvenile shared the pain medication, and when Patrick Pridemore asked for his share of the pills, he was advised that none were taken.

During the break-in the juvenile dropped his mother's Cardinal Card through the boards of the Godseys' porch. The next morning the juvenile returned to the home in an effort to retrieve the card. He first spoke with Mr. Godsey, offering his sympathies for his wife's illness, but the man became suspicious when the youth asked if he could remove boards from the porch to retrieve something he had just dropped, said Hines.

Mr. Godsey notified police, and they retrieved the card from under the porch. From there, said the prosecutor, the investigation led to the juvenile co-defendant, which led to the Pridemore brothers as suspects in the burglary.

While assisting the police with the investigation, Mr. Godsey was not able to spend as much time with his wife as he normally did, and during the course of the investigation she passed away, said Hines. Mr. Godsey was also hospitalized following these events because he had to do without his prescription medications which were also stolen during the break-in, Hines said.

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