ST. GEORGE — A St. George man accused of luring two men from a bar and robbing them at gunpoint earlier in the year has been sentenced to prison.
Jakob Grogan, 20, appeared before 5th District Judge Eric Ludlow for a number of charges, including aggravated robbery, criminal trespass and possession or use of drug paraphernalia.
The charges are in connection with a Jan. 5 incident in which Grogan met two men at the One and Only bar in St. George, invited them to a party and then robbed them at gunpoint after leading the men to an apartment complex.
Additional charges were added during Grogan’s incarceration, including jail damage, assault by prisoner and propelling a substance at officers. Grogan entered into a plea agreement with prosecutors, pleading guilty to three felonies and four misdemeanor charges in exchange for any additional charges to be dismissed.
Grogan’s defense attorney, Ariel Taylor, asked the Court to take into account the defendant’s age during sentencing, adding that his client had been in custody for some time. Taylor asked for his client to be sentenced to one year of incarceration where Grogan can complete an inpatient program with no early release and the opportunity for supervision afterwards.
“Because of his age, it might be worth the risk of affording him the opportunity to be housed here on the year rather than be with individuals who have been breaking laws much longer than he has,” he said.
Grogan addressed the court, asking for treatment over being “sentenced to a facility where it’s going to take years of my life.”
“I do understand that I do have to face the consequences for my actions,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to changing my life and not getting put in an environment where I’m more likely to be put in a negative situation with individuals that really aren’t my cup of tea.”
Ludlow broke down the charges, asking Grogan to explain the thought process behind his actions. Grogan took accountability for his actions, saying that he made a negative decision when he was “in need of a lot of things” and went about fulfilling those needs in the wrong way.
Grogan added that many of his actions while in jail have been because he didn’t feel supported and often times felt hopeless and that nothing would change.
The prosecution asserted that Grogan should go to prison based on details that illustrate how he is a threat to the community, including that he had possession of a dangerous weapon and committed aggravated assault and robbery with that weapon and that the defendant was already on parole at the time of the incident.
Grogan’s affiliation to a gang also concerned the prosecution — he reportedly identifies as a member of the Los Angeles Blood.
Taylor said “getting out” of a gang is dangerous and asserted it would be easier for Grogan to leave gang life behind at the county jail instead of at the prison where there are more gang-related problems.
The prosecution continued to push for a prison sentence, adding that Grogan has hurt deputies, people who have tried to befriend him and other officers in the community.
Ludlow ultimately sentenced Grogan to 1-15 years in prison for the third-degree felony charge of aggravated robbery, 0-5 years in prison for the third-degree felony count of assault by prisoner and one year in the county jail for the class A misdemeanor count of propelling a substance at an officer. These terms are to be served consecutively.
Grogan was also sentenced to 0-5 years for a third-degree felony count of damaging jails, which is to be served concurrently with the other terms. The defendant will be credited 250 days for the time he has already spent in jail.
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