Memorial thief pleads guilty - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Memorial thief pleads guilty

YAKIMA, Wash -- One of the two men arrested for stealing the Fallen Hero's Memorial in Yakima pleaded guilty today.

Last fall, a week or so before Thanksgiving, the memorial was stolen from its base in downtown Yakima.

James Hooker and Robert Pearson were arrested and charged with the theft. This morning, Hooker plead guilty to stealing the monument. He will be sentenced in a few weeks, and he's facing about three years in prison.

Susan Whitman's son-in-law was killed in Iraq, and was remembered on the memorial. She said the money to repair or replace the memorial has already been raised.

"The community has been so supportive," said Whitman. "Which ever direction this has been going the community has bee behind this 100%. So that has been absolutely wonderful."  

The memorial is still part of the prosecutors evidence and will be returned after the legal case is complete.

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