By Brad Segall
NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) – Two more Pottstown men have admitted their roles in a conspiracy to steal bronze vases from two cemeteries in Montgomery and Chester counties and then sell them for scrap in Philadelphia.
Alonzo Burgess pleaded guilty in Montgomery County to conspiracy to commit theft and desecrating a cemetery and was sentenced to 14 to 23 months behind bars followed by six years probation.
Prosecutors say the 47-year-old man was the lookout when 200 vases were stolen from Highland Memorial Cemetery in Pottstown and Mount Zion Cemetery in North Coventry (see related story).
Prosecutor Noah Marlier says the vases, which are valued at valued at $140,000, were scrapped for pennies on the dollar.
“This is the final resting place for some military veterans and other individuals and the victims in this case are the families who would go back to these places. This is a place of rest for the individuals that they lost.”
Gary Laws, who was the getaway driver, was given five years probation. James Tidmore was sentenced last year to two to four years in state prison.
None of the vases were recovered, but they were replaced by the cemetery.