Ohio Man Pleads Guilty After Beating, Robbery of Poker Player
A Canton, Ohio man accepted a plea deal Wednesday, pleading guilty to several charges stemming from the armed robbery and beating of a Jackson Township poker player in January. 25-year-old Christopher Lucius was sentenced to seven years in prison and has been ordered to pay $150,000 in restitution to the victim, Jerad Klick.
According to testimony, Lucius and another man forced their way into Klick’s house on January 8th, beat him, threatened his life, and stole $150,000, $60,000 of which was in cash, and $90,000 of which was in the form of casino chips. The defense questioned Klick as to why he would have that much money out in the open at his house (it was sorted in the living room), to which he replied that safe boxes at the casino were not available. He had planned to go to the bank with his mother to open a joint safe deposit box the next day.
The incident happened just after midnight. Klick was lying in bed with his 2-year old son when he heard a car pull into the driveway. Not recognizing the car, he went downstairs to look through the peephole. When he didn’t see anything, he opened the door a crack, at which point the men forced their way inside the residence. They punched and kicked Klick, threatening to murder him if he didn’t tell them where his safe was. Eventually they had him on his knees in the basement with a gun to his head and ten seconds left to live if he didn’t reveal the location of the safe, which didn’t exist.
Less than two weeks after the incident, Klick described the nightmare on Two Plus Two under the screen name “JKjkJK” (unedited):
Yes they wanted to go up there bc they wanted a safe and I would not let them so the fight and wrestling around went with me u know what I’m saying. I just keep backing up and backing up while I’m getting punched and kicked but they have to follow me they can’t to upstairs and leave me to run for help or make a phone call to 911. I managed to get to my basement and garage steps and we all wrestled down the steps me begging them not to shot. When I’m on my knees in basement they are counting to ten for me to give up the safe location about 6 I just desperately took off I don’t know how or why but I felt I had to try to survive anyway possible. I run out garage door try to shut it on one of them. They are pissed and screaming at this point the corner me and trap me and pull me up basically by my head to the living room where I’m pistol whipped. At that point I say please don’t shoot me blah blah I’m a father blah blah just leave u have 150 thousand dollars and at that point one assailant tells the other to go turn the car around the other tells me to put my hands behind my head as I’m laying on the floor in the puddle of blood from the pistol whip he says count to 20 out loud with ur eyes shut and when u say the number 20 u will be dead. At that point I count as he says “louder bitch” obv I’m trembling and absolutely terrified that my life is about to be over and my son is going to find his dad dead. I count to about 12 and here the screen door and footsteps down the front porch steps. I run to the door lock it and call 911.
Klick said that he doesn’t think the men had any idea how much money they had already gotten from him because as soon as he told them it was $150,000, they stopped asking about the safe and made their way out of the house.
Lucius was caught primarily because he left his cell phone behind. The prosecution called two of his ex-girlfriends as witnesses as well as a recruiter from an employment firm who had all used the number connected to the phone to call Lucius not long before the crime. Additionally, the owner and operator of Canton Car Connection testified that he sold Lucius a vehicle for which he paid $13,000 in cash after trying to trade in a black Cadillac, allegedly the same car he drove to Klick’s house.
Though there wasn’t 100 percent damning evidence presented, Lucius’ attorney, George Pappas, convinced his client that he would likely be found guilty, so they were willing to take a plea deal. At the same time, the prosecution wished it could have gotten him a harsher punishment, but was willing to agree to less to make sure he went to prison.
Lucius pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary, and aggravated theft, as well as three counts of improperly handling firearms in a motor vehicle and three counts of having weapons under disability. A few charges were dropped, including kidnapping and felonious assault, as well as some additional weapons charges.
Klick is not positive how Lucius and his partner found him, but his best guess is that they either saw him collecting winnings at the Horseshoe Casino in Cleveland and followed him home or were tipped off.
In the Two Plus Two thread, Klick was obviously distraught about the situation, but not simply the trauma of its occurrence. He said that he has gotten lots of unexpected backlash from people angry at him for things like not having a gun to protect his child or for leaving so much money in the open. For him, the negative response has been so overwhelming that he even sometimes wished he had never called the police. He also became belligerent to people in the thread, so much so that there has not even been much in the way of virtual pats on the back for him, particularly when he posted, “IVE WAITed a long time to tell you creeps this. GUILTY!!!! now for any you punks that came at me….know that I’m coming back real soon….. anything you wanna say to me come say it to my face so I can show you who the ****in’ boss is.”
At the trial, Klick’s attitude was toned down a bit he still doesn’t sound like he has any intention of putting this behind him and moving on. According to CantonRep.com, he called Lucius “uneducated” and said he couldn’t envision any way Lucius could repay him the entire $150,000. “I look forward to him struggling with that for the rest of his life,” he said.