Elderly victim confronts burglar in court

BY STACI WILSON

A 72-year-old Thompson man confronted the 28-year-old man who burglarized his business as he was being sentenced Thursday in Susquehanna County Court.

Randall Conti, of Vandling, pleaded guilty to burglary and attempted criminal trespass in separate cases and was immediately sentenced by President Judge Kenneth Seamans.

But before the judge issued the sentence, the victim in both cases, Frederick Milos, took the stand.

Conti burglarized Milos place of business – a garage on Aug. 10, 2012, taking tools and wire to sell to support a drug habit.

He returned to the business the following night, but Milos was guarding his property that night.

On the stand Milos said to Conti, “I worked long and hard for what I have.”

He told the court that after he discovered his tools were missing and reported the incident to police, he decided to keep watch over his garage the next evening.

“I confronted you that night,” Milos said. “I fired a shot in the air to stop you. You’re lucky, because I’m a pretty good shot.”

“Victims like me are not going to tolerate this anymore. This has to stop,” he said.

Conti also took the opportunity to address the court before he was sentenced.

“My actions are not justifiable by any means,” he said. And turning slightly to look at Milos, who was seated in the courtroom, he said, “I’m sorry.”

Judge Seamans said, “You heard the impact you had on him. The man’s entitled to the peace of mind you tried to take from him by taking his tools.”

Conti was sentenced to serve 14-48 months in the burglary charge; and nine-48 months on the attempted criminal trespass count. Both sentences will run concurrent with each other and with a sentence recently handed down in Lackawanna County.

He was also order to pay $1,050 in restitution to Milos.