Jesse Q. Belland
A Christmastime joyride in a stolen car through the slick streets of North Platte was the frosting on the cake that put a 29-year-old man behind bars for up to eight years.
Jesse Belland of North Platte was sentenced Monday in Lincoln County District Court for several crimes, including theft and aiding and abetting theft. Belland will serve at least a year, eight months and a maximum of five years for those crimes in the state penitentiary.
Also, Belland was sentenced to three 1-3 year terms for theft, flight to avoid arrest and willful reckless driving. Those three sentences run concurrently, but 1-3 years was added to the first sentence.
Belland was arrested on Dec. 26 after driving a car that was stolen that morning in the 900 block of East Third. A woman left her 2001 Lexus running at the curb to warm up and she looked out to see it gone.
Police saw the car that afternoon and tried to stop it, but it sped off.
The chase was abandoned because of slick streets, but another policeman saw the car later, and a little later the car slid across an intersection and hit a stop sign. It was eventually left idling in the Red Cedars Trailer court, where police followed footprints in the snow that led to Belland in a mobile home. He admitted he was the driver.
Investigators discovered Belland also had a hand in a car that was stolen on Christmas morning from the 1800 block of West Third. The owner of that car also left it warming up in his driveway and looked out to see it leaving.
Belland was jailed immediately, but in late February he was released on bail. He was arrested again just two weeks later for driving on a suspended license and he has been in jail since.
Belland has already served two stretches in the state pen. He did two and a half years in 2004-06 for assault in Sarpy County. In 2008-11, he was imprisoned for three years, three months for theft in Douglas County.
Belland pled no contest in May to the North Platte charges, part of a deal that a charge of habitual criminal would not be filed.