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Man admits to burglarizing wounded friend

A man will serve prison after admitting to crimes that included stealing from a friend who was undergoing emergency surgery for a gunshot wound.

Joshua Dean Lines, 31, was sentenced to two years after pleading guilty to separate robbery and burglary Friday in Jackson County Circuit Court. He admitted he punched an employee at Macy's after he was caught shoplifting sunglasses in February, and to the theft of a TV and PlayStation as his friend was in the hospital in April.

In the wee hours of March 25, Lines was with Matthew Atkinson when two men, John Robert Hermann and Stephanie Van Cleave, allegedly came to Atkinson's home in a dispute that culminated in Hermann alleged shooting Atkinson in the pelvis area. Hermann faces pending attempted murder and assault charges, and Van Cleave faces a pending charge of conspiring to commit first-degree assault in the shooting.

Atkinson's mother rushed her son to the Providence Medford Medical Center emergency room by 3 a.m., bringing Lines along. But while the mother waited in the hospital he took Atkinson's keys, and was caught on the home's surveillance camera later that morning taking Atkinson's TV and video game console. When neighbors caught him, Lines said Atkinson gave him permission, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Allan Smith.

Lines and his court-appointed defense lawyer Donald Scales said little during the hearing.

Circuit Court Judge Patricia Crain asked if he was high on drugs when he punched the store employee in the nose on Feb. 21, fleeing shirtless with the stolen sunglasses, noting that three narcotics cases were dismissed as part of the plea agreement. Lines said he was.

"I hope you're embarrassed," Crain said in reference to the Macy's robbery. "I mean, the guy's just doing his job."

Lines was sentenced to 24 months in the Oregon Department of Corrections and ordered him to pay more than $1,000 in restitution — $896.32 in the burglary and $118 in the robbery.

— Reach reporter Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or nmorgan@mailtribune.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MTCrimeBeat.

Man admits to burglarizing wounded friend