Man Gets 10 Years for Slashing Tires

Man said to have punctured hundreds of tires

Thursday, Nov 10, 2011  |  Updated 11:54 AM CDT
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Man Gets 10 Years for Slashing Tires

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A central Texas jury has sentenced a homeless man suspected of puncturing hundreds of tires in an Austin neighborhood to 10 years in prison.

The Austin American-Statesman reported Tommy Joe Kelley received the maximum sentence after being convicted Wednesday on one count of unlawful use of a criminal instrument.

Kelley, who represented himself, told jurors the case against him was circumstantial.

He was on trial on one count, related to his arrest on Dec. 31, 2010.

But prosecutor accused him of slashing and puncturing hundreds of vehicle tires in the Hyde Park neighborhood of central Austin dating back to 1994.

Kelley has also been indicted on four additional counts of the same charge. Prosecutors have not decided whether to try him on those other charges.

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