Man Gets 12+ Years for Burglaries, Home Invasion Robbery
A Trenton man who helped burglarize five unoccupied Bucks County houses before robbing and assaulting an elderly couple in their home was sentenced Tuesday to serve 154 to 308 months in state prison.
That amounts to roughly 12.8 to 25.7 years behind bars for Oliver Cabrera, 27. That time will begin when he completes a sentence he already is serving in New Jersey for similar crimes there.
“It is my intent to keep you under supervision for as long as I can,” said Bucks County Common Pleas Court Judge Diane E. Gibbons, who added 20 years of consecutive probation to the prison sentence.
A jury convicted Cabrera on Aug. 25 of all 30 charges against him, including corrupt organizations, conspiracy, and multiple counts of robbery, burglary, simple assault, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief.
Cabrera was part of a New Jersey-based burglary and robbery ring that struck 18 homes in Pennsylvania and New Jersey in 2012.
Six of those crimes occurred in Bucks County: five residential burglaries and one home-invasion robbery from late July to mid-September 2012 in Lower Makefield, Middletown and Upper Makefield Townships.
The burglaries typically consisted of forcing entry while no one was home, ransacking the house and stealing jewelry, guns, computers, cash, and, in one case, a Lexus automobile. Three of the families suffered losses exceeding $19,000 each.
The group’s final crime in Bucks County was its most violent. On Sept. 10, 2012, Cabrera was among three men who forced their way into an occupied Middletown home when a 78-year-old woman answered the doorbell around 9 p.m.
Wearing masks and gloves, the men – two of them carrying guns – pushed the woman to the floor, covered her face with pillows and bound her hands so tightly with zip ties that they bled and turned blue. One man removed the woman’s engagement ring from her hand before the group set upon her 79-year-old husband.
The men pointed guns at the elderly man’s head, zip-tied his hands until they bled, forced him to walk through the house showing them where he had hidden cash, and hit him in the face. After more than a half-hour of ransacking the couple’s house, the men left with jewelry and cash. The couple’s losses totaled $24,570.
Gibbons imposed consecutive 14- to 28-month sentences for each of the five burglaries of unoccupied homes, plus consecutive sentences of five to 10 years for robbing the elderly couple and two to four years for burglarizing their home.
The judge told Cabrera she didn’t understand how he “can watch a person hog-tied and threatened with a gun and not react as a human being … You could have, and should have, walked away.”
Failing to do so, she said, “shows you have no empathy.”
Two of Cabrera’s co-defendants have already received sentences of seven and one-half to 15 years in state prison. A fourth man charged in Bucks County is still awaiting trial.
The convicted co-defendants have been ordered jointly to pay a total of $84,136.96 in restitution to the victims for their losses.
The case was investigated by the Lower Makefield, Middletown and Upper Makefield Township Police Departments and prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Antonetta Stancu.
Contact: Antonetta Stancu, 215.348.6340, email@example.com
Approved for release by Jennifer M. Schorn, Deputy District Attorney.