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King pleads guilty to burglary

By all accounts, Leonard Augustus King is a talented musician, sometimes even playing at local churches, but for the next 10 years he’ll be playing a different type of tune &045;&045; the jailhouse blues.

Leonard Augustus King, 40, pled guilty to two counts of burglary third degree on Monday before Circuit Court Judge Jack Meigs and was sentenced to 10 years in state prison.

King is already on probation for a previous 15-year sentence. King, who is planning on making restitution to his victims, will only have to serve the 10-year sentence he pled to.

Monday’s plea stems from two separate burglaries involving churches.

The first burglary occurred on July 5, 2002. King was spotted by Selma Police Lt. Michael Harris on Union Street carrying an object. Harris lost sight of King, but located him again and stopped him at Church and Jeff Davis avenues.

King had been carrying a Yamaha keyboard. Since Harris knew King was a musician, he got the model and serial number of the instrument and let King go.

The next day, though, a burglary was reported at Providence Baptist Church in Selma. A Yamaha keyboard had been taken, and the serial number matched the number Harris had gotten from King.

The second count is based on a burglary that occurred around July 7, 2002.

A Trinity keyboard and Peavy sound mixing board had been taken from the Second Baptist Church in Selma through the east window.

A witness, Neal Walker, saw a green van parked on the east side of the church around 10 p.m. on July 7, which would later prove illuminating. At about the same time, Walker had seen a black male in the area. When Walker asked the man what he was doing, the man replied he was looking for keys.

Around 10:30 a.m., July 8, Selma Police Officer Jeff Persinger responded to a call of possible drunk driving near Small and Broad streets. When Persinger stopped the vehicle &045;&045; a green van &045;&045; the Peavy mixing board was in plain sight.

Walker identified King as the individual he saw the night before. Clarence Lee, a member of Second Baptist Church identified the mixing board as church property.