Bronner's vandals plead, could stay out of jail
Mon, 28 Feb 2011 21:28:33 GMT —
UPDATE: March 1, 2011 - 11:53 am :
The fifth Bronner's Vandalism suspect, 21-year-old Nickolas Bright, has pleaded not guilty. He also wained his arraingment hearing. His next court date has not yet been set.
Bright was not charged with the other four suspects Monday because of his age.
The Christmas Day vandalism of Bronner's Christmas Wonderland in Frankenmuth made national headlines this past year.
Now, those responsible admit to doing it.
Four of the five accused detail their part in the damage while the victim extended forgiveness to them all.
They pleaded guilty to two of the four charges against them.
They say they're guilty of malicious destruction of property and conspiracy. Each count carries a 5-year felony with fines.
Samuel Quintanilla says he was the driver. He took his brother and three friends to Bronner's Christmas Day.
He says he got baseball bats from his trunk, gave one to two of his friends, and then started swinging.
Branden Dean says he went to Bronner's intending on doing damage, but decided not to last minute.
Both he and Nickolas Bright served as lookouts for Samuel and Caleb Quintanilla and Ryan Buchler.
"If I were the judge, I would be real creative and say 'You're going to volunteer every Christmas Eve for the next five years to a soup kitchen. So you remember this.' Now, these kids spent four very, very difficult days in the Saginaw County Jail and I don't think they need to go back there."
The vandals' lawyers were very complimentary of Mr. Wayne Bronner, who they say went out of his way to introduce himself to each of them and talk about the best course of action.
Wayne Bronner tells NBC25, "We want to forgive them first of all and let them know that, but also give them the chance to restore themselves and hopefully be able to wipe their records clean."
It was Bronner's idea for them to provide restitution and keep them from having felony records.
The five will split the cost of $18,081.49 for restoration that Bronner has already paid for.
"Now it's up to those guys to try to restore themselves so to speak," says Bronner, who says he and his family have moved on a long time ago and that he hopes these boys learn from their mistake.
The fifth suspect, Nickolas Bright, is still deciding what to do in his case.
Wayne Bronner says each vandal apologized to him personally.