Fourth defendant pleads guilty to multiple break-ins, Kings Grant shooting

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James Edison Smallwood Jr.
James Edison Smallwood Jr.

The last of four co-defendants charged in connection with multiple breaking and entering incidents and larcenies in New Hanover County was sentenced to more than six years in prison on Monday.

James Smallwood, 35, pleaded guilty Monday in New Hanover County Superior Court to 35 breaking and entering charges and 33 larceny charges, according to District Attorney Ben David.

Smallwood along with three other defendants in the case – Kimberly Marie Mayhew, Joseph Paul Howard, and Eric James Howard – were charged with the breaking and entering cases that occurred at homes in both Wilmington and New Hanover County between July and December 2014, David said. The crew netted more than $400,000 worth of stolen goods.

A joint investigation with the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office and Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office led to the arrest of the suspects, David said. Smallwood also pleaded guilty to discharing a firearm into an occupied dwelling in connection with a shooting at a Kings Grant home in New Hanover County on Nov. 12, 2014, in which he and Mayhew were charged.

Kimberly Marie Mayhew
Kimberly Marie Mayhew

Mayhew, 29, plead guilty on Nov. 16, 2015 and was sentenced to 51-74 months in state prison. She is faces three consecutive 8-19 month suspended sentences and supervised probation, once she finishes her active prison sentence. As part of her probation, Mayhew was ordered to pay more than $113,800 in restitution.

Joseph Howard, 35, pleaded guilty as a habitual felon on Jan. 7 and was sentenced to 146-188 months in prison and was ordered to pay more than $94,600 in restitution.

Eric Howard, 27, pleaded guilty on Feb. 29 to 11 breaking and entering and larceny cases. He was given two active sentences totaling 24-47 months in prison. Howard also faces four consecutive 10-21 month sentences, which were suspended, and ordered to serve 36 months of supervised release. Eric Howard was ordered to pay more than $112,900 in restitution.

On Monday, Superior Court Judge Phyllis Gorham sentenced Smallwood to 73-100 months in the N.C. Department of Corrections and ordered him to pay more than $86,600 in restitution.

Joseph Paul Howard
Joseph Paul Howard

Eric James Howard
Eric James Howard

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