Norwalk runaway sentenced in plea deal

NORWALK Unless he's also an escape artist, Huron County's most famous runaway, Calvin Riley, will no
Cory Frolik
May 24, 2010

NORWALK

Unless he's also an escape artist, Huron County's most famous runaway, Calvin Riley, will not be disappearing in a stolen truck any time soon, authorities said.

Riley, who twice stole trucks belonging to neighbors and took off, admitted in juvenile court on Wednesday to burglary, theft, menacing and violating probation by running away.

As a result of the admission, which was a part of a plea agreement that wiped away three separate charges, the 14-year-old rural Bronson Township boy was ordered by Judge Timothy Cardwell to be placed in the custody of the community-correctional facility at the Erie County Juvenile Justice Center.

"That's a secured, treatment-based program and he basically is in there for an indefinite period of time -- until he successfully completes their program," said juvenile court administrator Chris Mushett.

Cardwell sent Riley to the facility for the probation violation, but gave him a suspended commitment to the Ohio Department of Youth Services -- which oversees state-run correctional facilities -- for the burglary and theft charges.

This means should Riley's behavior fail to meet the expectations of the court or facility administrators, he would likely be transferred to youth detention for at least six months and possibly up until he turns 21.

On top of that, Riley was also ordered to write apology letters to the people who suffered from his actions.

This includes the neighbor whose truck he stole on Sept. 10 from his driveway on Moriah Road, the students he verbally abused in school, and the owners of an Oak Harbor home broken into by the teen so he could make a phone call to locate his friend.

Only days before he went on the run for the second time, Riley got into a confrontation with another boy. According to police, Riley threatened a 13-year-old classmate who stopped him from picking on a girl at Norwalk Middle School.

The threats and the criminal road trip took place only four months after Riley armed himself with guns and ammunition, stole a neighbor's truck, fled to Tennessee and caused a minor panic when authorities found a diary he inscribed with threats against teachers and students.

For those violations, Riley was placed on house arrest, which he was still serving at the time of his encore disappearance. He was initially fitted with a GPS ankle monitor, but was later placed solely under the 24-hour supervision of his family.

Riley's attorney, James Joel Sitterly, said he believes the treatment-based facility is appropriate because his client's emotional well-being will benefit greatly from the counseling he will receive.

Sitterly declined to say whether Riley had any underlying mental disorders.