LOGAN — A judge has sentenced Douglas L. Birkinbine to nine-years-to-life in prison, for breaking into several homes in 2015. Judge Brian Cannell called the 54-year-old’s actions selfish and heinous, as he handed down the maximum sentence possible.
Birkinbine appeared in 1st District Court Tuesday morning accepting a plea deal from prosecutors. Under conditions of the agreement, he pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony, three counts of residential burglary and one count of possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, all second-degree felonies. The remaining 35 charges against him were dropped by prosecutors.
Birkinbine and 52-year-old Victoria Asta robbed a home in Paradise at gun point and later led deputies on a high speed chase that ended in Logan on November 17, 2015. The two also broke into several other residences before being arrested.
During Tuesday’s sentencing, the Paradise homeowner told the court how Birkinbine broke into his home and pointed a loaded gun at his head. “My wife and I might be dead right now if it wasn’t for the great law enforcement personnel in our community,” said the victim.
Asta previously pleaded guilty for her role in the robberies, and was sentenced to two concurrent terms of one-to-fifteen years in prison.
State attorney Barbara Lachmar explained that not only was the aggravated robbery brazen but the high speed chase through the county put more people in danger. “If it hadn’t been for law enforcement’s courage we might not have arrested them,” said Lachmar.
Salt Lake County court records show Birkinbine previously pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder in 1997. He was sentenced to serve one-to-fifteen years in prison and was out on parole when the burglaries took place.
During sentencing, Judge Cannell said Birkinbine had shown no sense of remorse. He ordered him to serve five-years-to-life on the aggravated burglary charge and one-to-15-years for each of the second-degree felonies. He also ordered for each sentence to be served consecutively, based on the criminal history. “I don’t know what else to say except that I have to protect the public,” said Judge Cannell.
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