COLUMBIA, Pa. (WHTM) — A man has been sentenced to five and a half to 12 years in state prison after pleading guilty to burglarizing a Columbia apartment back in December of 2021.

According to the Lancaster District Attorney’s Office, 54-year-old John Roy Gerfin pleaded guilty to a felony burglary charge after he entered an apartment back on December 16, 2021, at around 7 a.m. in the 200 block of North Second Street.

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The apartment was occupied by a mother and her 11-year-old daughter. The victim heard someone rummaging around on the first floor and confronted Gerfin, who was in the kitchen of the apartment. Gerfin then fled through a rear door with two bottles of alcoholic beverages, a sports bra, and a pair of jeans.

At 7:40 a.m. on the same morning, Gerfin was found hiding under a large tree concealed in leaves near the location of the crime. Both victims were able to identify that Gerfin was the suspect and that items that he left in a second location on North Second Street belonged to the first victim.

Assistant District Attorney Mark Fetterman prosecuted the case and arranged the plea deal.