Hyrum man avoids prison for botched home robbery after victim asks for mercy

Booking photo for Peter Silva (Courtesy: Cache County Jail).

LOGAN — A 42-year-old Hyrum man convicted of a botched burglary and other crimes will not be sent to jail, after the homeowner asked the court to show the defendant mercy. Peter Silva previously confessed to the bizarre crime spree that could have placed him behind bars for up to 15 years.

Silva was sentenced in 1st District Court Tuesday morning. He previously pleaded guilty to burglary and possession of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, both second-degree felonies; possession or use of a controlled substance, a third-degree felony; and attempted escape from official custody, a class A misdemeanor.

Last August, deputies were called to a convenience store in Wellsville. A citizen reported that Silva had tried to force entry into their vehicle, claiming that he needed to charge his cell phone.

Several hours later, deputies found an abandoned vehicle parked on SR-101. The car was later determined to be stolen. Inside was a 9mm handgun.

As deputies were investigating the vehicle theft, dispatchers received a call about a burglary in progress in the area of 5000 South 2600 West. When they arrived on the scene, a citizen was holding Silva at gunpoint. He had drugs and paraphernalia in his pockets along with a payroll check stolen from the homeowner. He also had keys to the earlier reported stolen vehicle, and other credit or debit cards.

Silva was taken to the Cache County Sheriff’s Office for questioning. While inside an interview room, he removed a light switch and caused a breaker to trip, shorting out the lights in the room. Deputies took him to the hospital, where he was treated for electrical burns to his fingers and later booked into jail.

During Tuesday’s sentencing, the homeowner asked Judge Brian Cannell not to sentence Silva to any more jail time, so the defendant could continue to work towards overcoming his addictions. He explained that he didn’t know Silva before the crime but had gotten to know him, his family and their struggles.

Judge Cannell showed surprise by the victim’s statement. He told Silva, be grateful for the homeowner’s mercy. He said if it hadn’t been for the request and the defendant’s efforts to change, he would have sent him back to prison.

Earlier, Silva apologized to the court for what he did. He said, for the first time in his life he really wanted to change.


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