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Burglar Who Hurt Teen Gets 4 to 10 Years in Prison

November 28, 2016

Contact: David Keightly, 215.348.6342, dakeightly@buckscounty.org

A serial burglar who injured a teenage boy who confronted him after arriving home from school was sentenced today to serve four to 10 years in state prison.

"The young man is a hero,” the chastened burglar, Joseph Blose, told Bucks County President Judge Jeffrey L. Finley before being sentenced. “He dropped his book bag and ran right at me.”

Blose, 42, of Allentown, pleaded guilty to charges of burglary, receiving stolen property and simple assault in the Nov. 4, 2015, break-in in Springfield Township.

It was a familiar situation for Blose, who has an extensive record of property crimes and drug convictions dating to his teenage years. He blamed his criminal behavior on sexual abuse during his childhood, coupled with years of heroin addiction.

“Everything (criminal) I did was to be numb,” he said in court.

Blose was in the midst of burglarizing a home on Route 212 in Springfield when a 14-year-old boy came home from school around 3 p.m. The teen told police that he saw an unfamiliar red pickup truck parked in his driveway when he got off the school bus, and saw that the cellar doors to his house were open.

The boy entered the house after unlocking a rear door, noticed that his dogs were acting restless, and saw that the kitchen door to the basement was open. He then heard footsteps on the second floor and saw Blose coming down the stairs.

The boy told police that Blose said, “Oh, geez,” and grabbed him. They scuffled briefly until the teen threw Blose to the floor. As Blose fled out the back door, the boy said, he grabbed his .22-caliber rifle, saw Blose getting into the red truck, and fired one shot at the truck as it sped away.

The teen yelled to a passing motorist to stop Blose, and the driver managed to follow the truck long enough to record its license tag number. The truck was traced to Blose’s mother, with whom Blose was living.

The boy suffered a minor injury to his elbow in the struggle. Stolen was more than $500 in cash from his mother’s bedroom. An antique crystal lamp was broken, as was a wooden jewelry box that had belonged to the boy’s great-grandmother.

The teen and his mother sat in court during the sentencing, but did not speak. The boy’s mother had submitted a letter stating that the county “can keep (Blose) for as long as they want.”

“If he’s an addict, dry him out and teach him alternative behaviors. Make him work,” the mother wrote. “If a person is busy working, they won’t have the time to break into homes, steal, and assault children in the middle of the afternoon.”

In a sometimes rambling statement, Blose apologized to the teen for hurting him, at one point offering him his pickup truck if the boy wanted it.

Blose told Finley that he has begun attending Bible studies in prison and is striving to overcome his mental health and addiction issues.

“For once in my life, I am not making excuses anymore,” he said. “I don’t want to be one of those guys who goes to jail and finds God, because God was not missing. It was my brain that was missing.”

Finley recommended that Blose be allowed to serve his state prison time in a therapeutic community where he can receive addiction and mental health treatment. The judge also ordered him to pay $630 in restitution to the victims.

The case was investigated by Springfield Township police and prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney David Keightly Jr.

Approved for release by Gregg Shore, Deputy District Attorney.


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Office of the District Attorney
Bucks County Justice Center
100 N. Main Street
Doylestown, PA 18901 
Phone: 215-348-6344 
Fax: 215-348-6299

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