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Shepherdstown, W.Va., man sentenced in armed robbery of kennel

Ian Michael Derr was placed on probation for five years and must pay restitution

February 26, 2013

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — A Shepherdstown, W.Va., man who pleaded guilty last year to taking part in the 2010 armed robbery of Beck’s Kennels in Berkeley County was placed on probation for five years Tuesday at his sentencing hearing in Berkeley County Circuit Court.  

Ian Michael Derr, 23, who pleaded guilty in February 2012 to first-degree robbery and felony burglary, successfully completed a rehabilitative education-based program at the Anthony Correctional Center for youthful offenders, Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney Pamela Games-Neely said after the hearing.

Prison sentences of 40 years and one to 15 years for the robbery and burglary convictions were suspended by 23rd Judicial Circuit Judge John C. Yoder.

Games-Neely said Derr had almost no criminal history prior to his arrest in the robbery case.

The same thing could not be said for co-defendant, Ronald Dale “Georgie” Whetzel Jr., who was sentenced to 40 years in prison in December 2011.

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Derr and Whetzel have been ordered to pay restitution in the case, Games-Neely said. 

Derr vowed in court last year to pay back “every penny” of the $8,000 that police said he and Whetzel took from the kennel.

Masked and dressed in all black clothing, Whetzel and Derr waved what appeared to be handguns at three women in the business, which was operated out of a residence, and demanded all of the money being kept there, according to court records.

Whetzel was carrying a pellet gun and Derr was armed with a 9mm handgun, police have said.

Whetzel, who is now 18, was prosecuted as an adult and was 16 when the armed robbery happened, police had said.

— Matthew Umstead

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