Woman gets 7 months in assault case

ESCANABA – A 21-year-old Escanaba woman will spend seven months in jail in connection with a home invasion involving the assault of a Bark River man. The sentencing was handed down in Delta County Circuit Court Thursday prior to a co-defendant making a plea.

Alyna Caryn Brunette wept as Judge Stephen Davis sent her to jail on one count of attempted larceny in a building. He also ordered her to 18 months of probation and $568 in fines and costs. She was given credit for the 19 days she served in jail prior to posting bond last fall.

Before sentencing Brunette on Thursday, the judge described the assault she was involved in as a serious and premeditated sick scheme.

Brunette and co-defendants Michael Scott Jones, 19, and Ashley Marie Stodola, 20, also of Escanaba, were arrested last fall in connection with a home invasion incident in Bark River Township on Oct. 22, 2011 when a 41-year-old man was assaulted.

The three defendants were charged following a year-long investigation by the Michigan State Police Post in Gladstone. According to police, Brunette and Stodola were meeting with the victim inside a mobile home when Jones and others allegedly assaulted the man in an attempt to rob him.

Brunette was arrested in October and originally charged with conspiracy to commit larceny from a person. She pleaded to the lesser charge of attempted larceny in a building.

Later Thursday in circuit court, Jones pleaded guilty to third-degree home invasion, stating he made plans with Brunette, Stodola and others to break in the house to beat up the victim with bats and take his money. Jones said he kicked the door down, punched the man in the face, and left with Brunette.

Jones attempted to plead guilty to third-degree home invasion in circuit court on Tuesday but Davis did not accept the plea because the defendant did not give sufficient facts to support the guilty plea.

Jones was arrested in November last year and lodged in the county jail in lieu of a $10,000 bond. He was originally charged with first-degree home invasion, conspiracy to commit larceny from a person, and felonious assault. These counts were dismissed in exchange for Thursday’s guilty plea.

Jones also agreed to testify truthfully about others involved in the Oct. 22, 2011 incident if there are further court proceedings.

Jones will be sentenced in circuit court on the third-degree home invasion charge on March 4. The felony carries a maximum punishment of five years in prison and a $2,000 fine.

Stodola is scheduled for a pretrial conference hearing in circuit court on Feb. 5 when a trial date or a plea date will be set.

Stodola is charged with conspiracy to commit larceny from a person, a 10-year felony. She was arrested in October last year and remains lodged in jail in lieu of a $5,000 cash bond.