Latest News

Accused Chester burglar turns down time served, represents himself in trial

A Chester man who turned down an offer of time served in jail, then fired his lawyer during a trial, was sentenced to 15 years in prison after a jury convicted him of armed robbery and burglary.

Geraldo Land, 30, was convicted Friday of burglary, two counts of armed robbery, assault and battery and possession of a weapon during a violent crime, said Candice Lively, 6th Circuit Deputy Solicitor.

Land was charged with using a gun to rob a group of men playing cards on Ashford Street in Chester in April 2017.

It was the second trial in the case. A jury could not reach a verdict in April.

Land said in court that he had been offered a time served sentence after the first trial, but that he turned the offer down because he claimed to be “innocent,” court testimony and attorneys in the case said.

Land had been in jail since his arrest in June 2017.

Land’s trial started on Wednesday in Chester County. After opening arguments, Lando fired his lawyer, Geoff Dunn.

Land then represented himself during the remainder of the trial.

Witnesses and other evidence showed that Land committed the crimes, said prosecutors Lively and Randy Newman, 6th Circuit Solicitor.

A burglary conviction carries a minimum of 15 years in prison.

Judge John C. Hayes III ran the 35-year sentences for the other charges concurrent with the 15-year sentence for burglary, according to prosecutors and court records.

It is unclear if Land will appeal his convictions.

Land remains in the Chester County jail, pending being sent to the S.C. Department of Corrections.

Andrew Dys: 803-329-4065, @AndrewDysHerald
Related stories from Rock Hill Herald