MIAMI COUNTY — The man who reportedly committed the September robberies of Dollar General and Aldi was sentenced to two concurrent four-year prison terms for his crimes.
Rayne Szwec, 23, of Piqua, was sentenced Monday in Miami Count Common Pleas Court for a total of four years in jail and three years of mandatory post-release control after he is released from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.
Szwec pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree felony robbery in December as part of a plea bargain with the state that amended his indictment down to two counts of second-degree felony robbery from two counts of first-degree felony robbery.
“If it were not for his addiction to heroin, this event would not have occurred,” Szwec’s attorney Patrick Mulligan said Monday. Mulligan described a time when he had talked to another heroin addict, who described the addiction as something that always stays with the person.
“Once the man is in you, he never leaves,” Mulligan said, recounting what the addict said. “I thought that was very profound.” In reference to Szwec’s alleged heroin addiction, Mulligan said, “If we don’t deal with that issue, it will never go away.”
Mulligan stated that when he first met and began representing Szwec, “He wasn’t quite right yet.” After 139 days served in jail, Mulligan said, “I would suggest he’s a different person now, but he’s untreated at this point.”
Mulligan added that Szwec’s actions in robbing those businesses was “not like him” and out of character for Szwec.
“He’s embarrassed by what was done,” Mulligan said.
“I’m very sorry for my actions,” Szwec said, adding that he thanks God “for the opportunity to change my life.”
Prosecutor Paul Watkins said that the state had no knowledge of Szwec’s heroin addiction, calling Szwec’s actions in robbing those businesses “extremely violent.”
During the course of the robbery at Aldi, Szwec reportedly approached the clerk and displayed what appeared to be a black handgun, according to the Piqua Police Department. The weapon was later found to be a BB gun.
“He made the decision to not only rob Dollar General, but went on to Aldi,” Watkins said.
Szwec has no prior felony convictions as an adult in Miami County, but Judge Jeannine Pratt took into consideration prior felony charges that occurred in Florida. According to Judge Pratt, Szwec took part in a diversion program for two felony charges in Florida and those charges were later nullified.
Judge Pratt determined that Szwec was not eligible for community control in regard to the two counts of second-degree felony robbery to which he had pleaded guilty. Judge Pratt considered the crimes, Szwec’s alleged alcohol abuse, refusal of treatment, and the impact to the businesses.
“The victim suffered serious economic harm,” Judge Pratt said. “These are serious offenses.”
Judge Pratt stated that Szwec used threatening behavior toward the public. The judge also stated that Szwec’s actions showed forethought and planning due to the robberies being a week apart.
Szwec was then sentenced with a jail credit of 139 days already served. He was also ordered to pay approximately $326 in restitution to Dollar General.
Reach reporter Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall