MEDINA — A judge denied a family’s request for the early release of their 22-year-old granddaughter who’s in prison for attacking her boyfriend and another woman at a party in June 2012.
“I’m sorry I wasted your time,” Medina County Common Pleas Judge Christopher J. Collier told the family of Brittany Rodgers. “But I’m excited that when she’s released from this, she has people like you to get back to.”
County Assistant Prosecutor Scott Salisbury accused Rodgers of using a baseball bat and a martial arts knife to attack Andrew Dicello and the other woman. Salisbury said Rodgers became jealous and attacked the pair after the three engaged in a sexual encounter together.
Collier sentenced Rodgers to three years in prison — the minimum possible sentence he could give her — in December, after she pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary, three counts of felonious assault and two counts of evidence tampering. He could have put her behind bars for more than 20 years.
“Three years is right,” Collier said. “I’m sorry, but I’ve got to deny it.”
The girl’s family didn’t deny her crimes, but said they believe she’s changed for the better in the eight months she’s spent in the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville.
“I’ve been in correspondence with Brittany since her incarceration, and I’ve noticed a change in her demeanor,” said her grandfather, Jim Rodgers.
He said she wasn’t in trouble with the law whatsoever until she met Dicello, 25, who has an extensive record in Medina Municipal Court. Dicello has no felony record in the county.
“She’s not a violent person by nature,” he told the judge, adding that he thinks she’s growing more mature in prison.
Rodgers’ grandmother, Theresa Kasperak, agreed.
“She’s sorry for what she did,” Kasperak said.
“I believe that’s true,” Collier told them.
Kasperak’s fiance, Jim Cerny, said Rodgers has a mental disorder of some kind and is now getting the treatment she needs.
Collier said he was glad to see her family’s unconditional support and love.
“I think that’s beautiful,” he said. “I really do.”
He told them to imagine how much Rodgers will have changed after three years.
Rodgers is set for release on June 11, 2015, according to state corrections records.
Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or firstname.lastname@example.org.