Lancaster man sentenced after receiving 27th criminal conviction in 30 years

LANCASTER — A Lancaster man will serve up to 37 years in prison after being sentenced in his 27th criminal conviction in 30 years, according to the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office.

James Fleetro Thomas was convicted in March of burglary, reckless endangerment and other charges after leading police on a vehicle pursuit that included him jumping from a moving vehicle in an attempt to escape.

Prosecutors presented a binder full of Thomas’ criminal records, which span four decades.

“The time has at long last come to warehouse this man,” assistant district attorney Travis S. Anderson said at a sentencing hearing before County Judge Donald Totaro.

Totaro agreed, and ordered a sentence of 13 to 27 years in prison, to be served consecutively to a 5- to 10-year sentence ordered last month regarding a probation violation stemming from the latest charges.

In all, the 49-year-old Thomas will spend the next 18 to 37 years in prison, the DA’s Office says.

Thomas reportedly cursed and scuffled with sheriff’s deputies after the sentence was issued, demanding to leave the courtroom.

The latest conviction was in connection to a burglary that occurred in East Lampeter Township and possession of stolen property taken from a burglary in Manheim Township, according to the DA’s Office. Police who searched Thomas’ home found a stun gun next to the stolen goods.

Thomas was also convicted of reckless endangerment for jumping from a moving vehicle during a police chase. The vehicle he was driving was stolen in the Manheim Township burglary, the DA’s Office says. Police managed to catch up to the vehicle and stop it before it struck any other vehicles on the roadway.