Wednesday, July 8, 2020
July 8, 2020

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Man gets 10 years in Hockinson Christmas Eve burglary and arson

Charges stem from crimes at four separate residences

By , Columbian Breaking News Reporter
Published:

A Clark County Superior Court judge handed down an exceptional sentence Friday of 10 years in prison for a 31-year-old man involved in a Christmas Eve burglary and arson of a Hockinson residence in 2017.

Joshua Adam Roland pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree burglary, second-degree theft and three counts of residential burglary. The charges stem from crimes at four separate residences, Senior Deputy Prosecutor James Smith said.

Roland originally faced several additional charges, including arson in the Hockinson burglary.

Roland and Daniel L. Cronin, 37, broke into and set fire to a house in the 17000 block of Northeast 119th Street. After the break-in, Roland cut his thumb and was bleeding profusely, and the men started the fire to cover up the blood evidence, according to affidavits of probable cause.

Smith previously said the fire displaced a family for more than three months. The family was attending a church service at the time and returned home to find their house ablaze. The fire destroyed children’s Christmas presents, according to the prosecutor.

Cronin was sentenced in July to more than 14 years in prison.

Roland’s brother, Michael Roland, 34, was sentenced in November 2018 to 30 days in jail after pleading guilty to second-degree possession of stolen property and second-degree rendering criminal assistance. He provided his brother with his identification and money to help him evade arrest. The added charge of possession of stolen property was for receiving, retaining, concealing or disposing of items he knew were stolen.

According to the defense’s sentencing memorandum, trial evidence would have shown that Roland cut his thumb on a blade outside the Hockinson home, and he left the property “presumably in a second vehicle parked down the street.” Cronin grabbed Roland’s bloody gloves and carried them with him inside; Roland was not present and did not help Cronin start a fire to hide the blood evidence, the memorandum says.

Smith noted that Cronin pleaded guilty to arson while Roland did not. However, the prosecutor said he believes the facts of the original probable cause affidavit are accurate.

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