Burglary trial ends in conviction

NORWICH – After a day-long trial where the only witness for the defense was the defendant himself, a jury convicted a Norwich man of felony burglary after 21 minutes of deliberations.

Terry L. Sturdevant Jr., 21, Norwich, could face a maximum sentence of 15 years in state prison.

First Assistant District Attorney Stephen M. Dunshee said his office would request the maximum sentence.

Sturdevant was convicted of entering an apartment on Adams Street in the City of Norwich Nov. 20, 2007. He was spotted by a local neighbor, Jeffrey A. Thornton, who referred to the defendant’s appearance as “suspicious.”

The witness was driving back to work after having lunch at his home when he encountered Sturdevant.

Thornton testified in yesterday’s trial, saying he saw Sturdevant walking “so slowly that he drew my attention.”

Thornton said he kept an eye on the defendant in his rearview mirror and saw him walk onto the lawn of a nearby neighbor. “I didn’t recognize him and he kept looking around at everything and moving strangely,” said Thornton, who decided to circle the block and check on his neighbor’s home.

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