On July 10, 2018, Christopher Whitney was sentenced to 16 months in prison for his role in two separate thefts in Cherokee County. Whitney previously plead guilty to stealing various items of personal property from a rural residence near Galena, as well as stealing a vehicle from another residence near Riverton. Both incidents were investigated by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office.
Shortly after the burglary, deputies with the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office stopped a vehicle occupied by Whitney and two other men. Deputies observed paperwork and personal property stolen from the residence. One of the suspects was also wearing a black cowboy hat stolen from the home. A subsequent search of the vehicle also uncovered a quantity of methamphetamine.
At sentencing the Defendant asked the Court to consider probation in lieu of a prison sentence. Deputy County Attorney Nathan Coleman argued for a prison sentence, citing Whitney’s lengthy criminal history, which includes 9 felony and 18 misdemeanor convictions. “Technically theft is considered a property crime, but to the victim the effect is very personal,” said Coleman. “Those who take property someone else has worked hard for need to spend some time in a cell.”