Walla Walla man may face 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to reduced charges

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WALLA WALLA -- A man accused of committing 20 crimes in the area, including five burglaries and thefts of guns from two locations pleaded guilty Monday in Superior Court to reduced charges.

But Mathew B. Weise, 32, of 428 S.W. 12th St., still faces the possibility of two decades in prison after pleading guilty to six crimes.

Most of the charges against Weise stemmed from break-ins dating back to May. In addition to the five burglary charges, he was accused of eight counts of theft -- including firearms, four counts of possessing guns as a convicted felon, one count of possessing burglary tools and two drug charges. But the prosecution agreed to reduce the case against him in exchange for his guilty pleas.

On Monday, Weise admitted to three counts of residential burglary, two counts of firearm theft and one count of first-degree unlawful possession of a firearm.

The standard-range penalty for the crimes is about 17-and-a-half to 23-and-a-third years because of the weapons charges and his criminal history that includes six felonies.

According to the plea agreement, Prosecuting Attorney Jim Nagle is recommending Weise be ordered to serve a 20-year prison term. But the prosecution will not object to Weise asking Judge Donald W. Schacht to impose a sentencing alternative requiring Weise to undergo drug treatment.

That alternative would result in Weise serving about 10 years in prison with a like amount on community custody.
Weise will be sentenced later.

He was arrested Aug. 16 after Walla Walla County sheriff's deputies served a search warrant at his residence, which has a postal address of College Place, but actually is outside the city limits.

Officials said Weise burglarized residences on Summit Place, the Old Milton Highway, Valley Street and Mojonnier Road. During the search of his residence, officials found stolen property, tools similar to those used in at least one of the burglaries and drug paraphernalia.

Two suspected marijuana plants in pots also were found on the property, officials said.

If Weise had been convicted of all charges, he potentially could have received a life prison sentence.

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