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Strickland gets plea deal, jail time

TABOR CITY, NC (WWAY) — The Tabor City teen accused of repeatedly damaging and trespassing at the home of former state Sen. R.C. Soles will spend some time in prison.

In a brief hearing here at the Tabor City courthouse Allen “Frog” Strickland pleaded guilty to a handful of charges, which include driving while license revoked, trespassing, and damage to property.

Had the case gone to trial as originally planned, the list of witnesses included Soles.

According to police reports Strickland, the former legal client of Soles, trespassed at the former senator’s home several times often vandalizing the property, but the guilty plea made any testimony unnecessary.

“We’re glad there’s a resolution that ultimately got a conviction,” Assistant District Attorney Fred Gore said. “The judge saw fit to give him a sentence that we’re fine with. We couldn’t object to him coming in and pleading guilty.”

Strickland will spend the next seven months behind bars. The judge sentenced to him eight months, but Strickland got credit for the month he was been waiting for his trial.

Soles was in the courtroom Friday. Afterwards he said he was not shocked by Strickland’s plea.

“Nothing surprises me in court,” Soles said.

Prosecutors say the guilty pleas send a strong message to the community.

“Ultimately I think the citizens of the area see that regardless of who you are or who you’re associated with you’ll be held accountable,” Gore said.

Next week, Strickland’s attorney plans to address a pending arson charge of Strickland’s. The lawyer plans to file a motion for dismissal. The DA’s office says someone else is already serving time for the incident that led to the charge.

More: continued here

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