Holland man gets 10 years in prison for break-ins, arson

Becky Vargo • Apr 23, 2019 at 10:00 AM

A week after his original sentencing date, the man charged with burning down a graphics/sign shop and breaking into more than 10 stores in Ottawa County learned that he is getting another four years added to the sentence he is already serving in Kent County.

Shane William Wheeler, 49, appeared in Ottawa County Circuit Court on Monday to be sentenced for a fall 2017 crime spree, during which authorities said he burned down Graphix Signs and Embroidery in Holland with his teenage accomplice, David Anthony Pelon. 

A week earlier, Judge Jon Hulsing told the Holland man that he was not going to follow the sentencing agreement made in Kent County. The judge offered Wheeler the opportunity to withdraw his plea. Wheeler agreed to take another week and talk it over with his attorney, Jennifer Kuiper-Weise.

On Monday, Hulsing again emphasized that he wasn’t going to follow the Kent County sentence of a minimum six years and up to 30 years in prison.

“It can be inferred that a greater sentence is involved,” said the judge, in giving Wheeler another opportunity to withdraw his plea.

Hulsing also added $3,500 to the restitution order, bringing Wheeler’s total restitution to $17,530.

Wheeler said he understood what could happen and that he was ready to proceed with sentencing.

Wheeler, who pleaded no contest to the Ottawa County crimes last month, was sentenced in February to between six and 30 years in prison for breaking into three Kent County businesses with Pelon. The teen was sentenced to 240 days in jail and three years probation in Ottawa County. 

Wheeler and Pelon were playing “Robin Hood,” stealing from the rich and giving to themselves, said a victim of the Ottawa County thefts in court during the April 15 hearing. The man said Wheeler and Pelon caused serious emotional damage to his family. 

On Monday, Hulsing ordered Wheeler to serve 10-30 years in prison for his convictions of breaking and entering and third-degree arson, as well as being a habitual offender.

The Ottawa County sentence will be served concurrent to the Kent County sentence, but adds four years at the minimum end. The jail sentence is consecutive to paroled, so there is no credit for jail time already served.

WZZM-TV reporter Noah Fromson contributed to this story.

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