KC Lee Betancud
KC Lee Betancud, 18, was convicted Thursday of some of the thefts during a recent rash of petty thefts and burglaries that swept through North Platte.
Betancud and Logan Reed, 18, were arrested Nov. 19. Police found them with cash, stolen property and prescription drugs that were traced to thefts from vehicles in the southwest part of the city.
The rash of petty thefts continued throughout the city for 10 days, totaling around 70, from Nov. 15-25.
Betancud pled no contest to attempted possession of hydrocodone and two counts of theft. Two other theft charges were dropped in a plea deal with the county attorney’s office.
He spent 16 days in jail.
Lincoln County Judge Kent Turnbull expressed outrage and warned Betancud to stay clean.
“These crimes are not appreciated by the citizens of North Platte,” Turnbull said, “and as a member of the community it is my duty to deliver that message to you for them.”
“This string of crimes has not stopped and I don’t know if your friends are still out there wandering around,” he said. “I may deviate from my norm when it comes time for sentencing.”
Turnbull set Betancud's sentencing for Jan. 23. Meanwhile, Betancud is free on a personal recognizance bond, but he will forfeit $10,000 if he fails to appear.
Police were called at 4:45 a.m. Nov. 19 to check on two suspicious men in the area of the North Platte Community Daycare, 1210 S. Ash.
Police soon caught up with Betancud and Reed near the Platte River Mall. The teens had items that were reported stolen from vehicles in the area of McDonald St. and Williams, as well near 1200 S. Ash, 1100 S. Buffalo, 2100 W. Leota and 1300 S. Carr, police said.