A dying thief who confessed to stealing a pair of ruby slippers that Judy Garland wore in “The Wizard of Oz” as a result of he wished to pull off “one last score” was given no jail time at his sentencing listening to Monday.

Terry Jon Martin, 76, stole the slippers adorned with sequins and glass beads in 2005 from the Judy Garland Museum within the late actor’s hometown of Grand Rapids, Minnesota. He gave into temptation after an previous affiliate with connections to the mob advised him the sneakers had to be adorned with actual jewels to justify their $1 million insured worth, his attorney revealed in a memo to the federal court forward of his sentencing in Duluth.

Martin confirmed little emotion because the decide handed down the sentence and was bodily unable to absolutely rise from his chair because the decide adjourned the listening to. He declined to deal with the courtroom. But protection lawyer Dane DeKrey stated the decision of the case ought to carry a measure of closure to the federal government, the museum, the slippers’ proprietor and to Martin himself.

The federal government was ready to maintain one individual accountable, DeKrey stated, whereas the museum and the collector who owns the slippers acquired to discover out what occurred. And Martin was ready to shut this chapter within the remaining months of his life as a substitute of taking his secret to his grave.

“They will never be made whole in this case,” the lawyer stated of the victims. “But they’re more whole than they had been in the last 18 years.”

The FBI recovered the shoes in 2018 when another person tried to declare a reward. Martin wasn’t charged with stealing them till final 12 months. Prosecutor Matthew Greenley stated in courtroom Monday that investigators used cellphone data to zero in on Martin, and used his spouse’s immigration standing as leverage to search Martin’s house and get him to confess.

He pleaded guilty in October to theft of a significant art work, admitting to utilizing a hammer to smash the glass of the museum door and show case to take the slippers. But his motivation remained largely a thriller till DeKrey revealed it in a courtroom submitting this month.

Martin, who lives close to Grand Rapids, stated on the October listening to that he hoped to take away what he thought had been actual rubies from the sneakers and promote them. But an individual who offers in stolen items, referred to as a fence, knowledgeable him the rubies weren’t actual, Martin stated. So he removed the slippers.

DeKrey wrote in his memo that Martin’s unidentified former affiliate persuaded him to steal the slippers as “one last score,” regardless that Martin had appeared to have “finally put his demons to rest” after ending his final jail time period practically 10 years earlier.

“At first, Terry declined the invitation to participate in the heist. But old habits die hard, and the thought of a ‘final score’ kept him up at night,” DeKrey wrote. “After much contemplation, Terry had a criminal relapse and decided to participate in the theft.”

Chief U.S. District Decide Patrick Schiltz accepted the advice of each side that he sentence Martin to time served as a result of he’s housebound in hospice care and is anticipated to die throughout the subsequent few months. He requires fixed oxygen remedy for persistent obstructive pulmonary dysfunction and had to be introduced into the courtroom in a wheelchair. The loud hum of his oxygen machine echoed by the courtroom.

Schiltz advised Martin he most likely would have sentenced him to 10 years in jail if it was nonetheless 2005. The decide additionally accepted the advice from each side that Martin ought to pay $23,500 in restitution to the museum and ordered him to pay $300 a month.

“I certainly do not want to minimize the seriousness of Mr. Martin’s crime,” the decide stated. “Mr. Martin intended to steal and destroy an irreplaceable part of American culture.”

In accordance to DeKrey’s memo, Martin had no thought concerning the cultural significance of the ruby slippers and had by no means seen “The Wizard of Oz.” As an alternative, DeKrey stated, the “old Terry” with a lifelong historical past involving housebreaking and receiving stolen property beat out the “new Terry” who had turn into “a contributing member of society” after his 1996 launch from jail.

After the fence advised Martin the rubies had been faux, DeKrey wrote, he gave the slippers to his previous affiliate and advised him he by no means wished to see them once more. The lawyer stated Martin by no means heard from the person once more. Martin has refused to determine anybody else who was concerned within the theft, and no person else has ever been charged within the case.

The FBI by no means disclosed precisely the way it tracked down the slippers. The bureau stated a person approached the insurer in 2017 and claimed he might assist get better them but demanded greater than the $200,000 reward being supplied. The slippers had been recovered throughout an FBI sting in Minneapolis the subsequent 12 months.

Federal prosecutors have put the slippers’ market worth at about $3.5 million.

Within the basic 1939 musical, Garland’s character, Dorothy, had to click on the heels of her ruby slippers 3 times and repeat, “There’s no place like home,” to return to Kansas from Oz. She wore a number of pairs throughout filming, but solely 4 genuine pairs are recognized to stay.

Hollywood memorabilia collector Michael Shaw had loaned one pair to the museum earlier than Martin stole them. The opposite three are held by the Academy of Movement Image Arts and Sciences, the Smithsonian Museum of American History and a non-public collector.

In accordance to John Kelsh, founding director of the Judy Garland Museum, the slippers had been returned to Shaw and are being held for safekeeping by an public sale home that plans to promote them after a promotional tour. He advised reporters he doubts they’ll ever come again to Grand Rapids.

Garland was born Frances Gumm in 1922. She lived in Grand Rapids, about 200 miles (320 kilometers) north of Minneapolis, till she was 4, when her household moved to Los Angeles. She died in 1969.

The Judy Garland Museum, situated in the home the place she lived, says it has the world’s largest assortment of Garland and “Wizard of Oz” memorabilia. The museum’s govt director, Janie Heitz, stated in courtroom that the theft value it “a significant amount of credibility” and made it tougher to borrow different objects linked with Garland and the film, in addition to hurting attendance.

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