CLEARFIELD — Andrew Martin, 34, of Duncansville, was sentenced to serve six to 12 years in state prison for a home invasion and assault in Madera.
Last September, Martin was found guilty by a jury of burglary, a felony of the first degree; criminal trespass, a felony of the second degree; use/possession of drug paraphernalia, an ungraded misdemeanor; three counts of simple assault and criminal mischief; misdemeanors of the second degree; defiant trespass-actual communication to (defendant).
President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman also found Martin guilty of harassment — a summary offense.
According to testimony at trial, on May 29 at approximately 8:30 a.m., a 53-year-old Madera woman was at her home on Blackburn Road when she saw a stranger, Martin, shirtless with the neighbor’s dog and he was weeping on her front lawn.
When she asked if he was OK, he insisted she let him inside her home, saying the dog told him it was OK and the dog never lies.
The woman retreated inside and locked the doors and called the police. Three state troopers arrived and stopped Martin walking along the road, but they said they had to release him because he had not threatened the victim. Police said they called Martin’s wife to pick him up and she was on her way.
The troopers parked on Blackburn Road to wait for Martin’s ride, but they lost sight of Martin and he returned to the female victim’s house. The victim’s brother had also arrived at the home and when Martin returned and rang the doorbell, the brother told Martin he was trespassing and told him to leave.
Martin pulled a dagger-style knife from his pocket and the brother retreated inside the residence and locked the door, braced his body against the door and drew his firearm. Martin kicked down the door and the brother pulled the trigger on his pistol but it failed to fire. Martin then began to punch and kick the brother until his sister retrieved her gun from the kitchen and told him to leave.
Martin exited the residence and was restrained by an employee of the female’s husband and state police arrived shortly afterward.
The male victim suffered numerous bruises to his face, head and body from the assault.
Both victims spoke at the sentencing hearing and said the incident has had a profound impact on their lives and it is something they will never forget.
“We’ve had a tough time,” the male victim said.
The male victim said he is thankful that he was there so his sister wasn’t the one who was assaulted.
“I thank God every day for my brother,” the female victim said.
Ammerman said Martin had to have been on drugs or had a significant mental health issue for him to do this.
“It doesn’t make any sense at all,” Ammerman said.
Martin also spoke at the hearing.
“I sincerely regret everything that happened,” Martin said.
Martin said he never denied the incident and only took it to trial because he thought the prison sentence was too long in the plea agreement offered by the District Attorney’s office.
Ammerman said he doesn’t doubt that the District Attorney’s office was asking for significant prison time.
“This was a big case,” Ammerman said. “We are not used to seeing this kind of thing happen around here.”
First Assistant District Attorney Ryan Dobo asked Ammerman to sentence Martin in the aggravated range or perhaps beyond the aggravated range due to the violent nature of the offense. However, Martin’s attorney Matthew Swisher of the Public Defender’s office said the offense fits the guidelines for the standard range.
Ammerman agreed and told Dobo he didn’t see anything that would qualify Martin to be sentenced in the aggravated range.
After issuing the sentence of 6-12 years in state prison, Martin objected, saying he thought it was too long. Swisher interjected and said the 6-12 year sentence is at the top of the standard range and asked that Martin be sentenced to the 4-9 year range.
Ammerman told Swisher he can file a motion for reconsideration of sentence if he disagrees with the sentence.
In addition to the jail sentence, Ammerman ordered Martin to pay $780 of restitution to the male victim, $500 to the female victim and $2,500 to Erie Insurance.