The neighbor of a Waterville Township man who was shot to death during an early morning home invasion last year admitted Monday that he solicited three young men to break into the victim’s home and rob him.
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In addition to Ronald Rooker, one of the intruders also pleaded guilty to his role in the deadly crime before Lucas County Common Pleas Judge Myron Duhart.
Rooker, 33, of 8930 S. River Rd., entered guilty pleas to complicity to involuntary manslaughter, complicity to aggravated burglary, and complicity to aggravated robbery for the May 18, 2013, home invasion that resulted in the shooting death of James Safadi, 34, at his home at 8940 S. River Rd.
Adam Anderson, 20, of 2436 Fulton St., pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and aggravated burglary for the same incident.
Michael Loisel, an assistant Lucas County prosecutor, said Rooker faces an agreed-upon sentence of 25 years in prison when he is sentenced June 24 by Judge Duhart, while Anderson could face up to 22 years in prison at his sentencing June 23.
As part of their plea agreements, both Rooker and Anderson agreed to testify against co-defendants, James Allen, 19, of 1732 E. Westland Gardens Rd., and Phillip Allen, Jr., 23, of 321 O’Connell St. The pair are scheduled to go to trial June 2 on charges of aggravated murder, aggravated burglary, and aggravated robbery, all with firearms specifications.
As part of their admissions of guilt, Rooker and Anderson answered Mr. Loisel’s questions about their actions that night.
Rooker, who did not enter Mr. Safadi’s home, admitted he was in contact with the three men through phone calls, text messages, and in person and got them to rob his neighbor, a carryout owner who he believed possessed a large amount of cash in his home.
Mr. Loisel said Rooker directed the intruders to pry open a basement window to gain entry to Mr. Safadi’s home. Once inside, Anderson told the court he — along with James and Phillip Allen, who had weapons with them — entered the bedroom where Mr. Safadi and his girlfriend were sleeping.
Anderson said he got a gun and held the woman at gunpoint, while the other two men shot Mr. Safadi in the leg in bed, then dragged him to the bathroom where they shot him again, then shot him a third time in the kitchen.
Anderson told the court they took $700 and a cell phone. Rooker said a ring also was taken from the victim’s girlfriend.
Mr. Loisel said afterward that Mr. Safadi’s family members were not pleased with the plea agreements, but they understood why the offers were made. Anderson, he added, “was cooperative [with investigators] even before he was indicted.”
Contact Jennifer Feehan at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-213-2134.