'Spiderman' Burglar Gets 20 Years
Aug. 10, 1999
MIAMI (AP) _ A burglar dubbed Spiderman by police was sentenced Monday to 20 years in prison for stealing $5,000 in property, including cash, a laptop computer and jewelry, from a seventh-floor waterfront condominium.
Derrick James was convicted in December for the June 21, 1998, theft.
James, a former Army paratrooper, is suspected of stealing $6 million in cash, jewelry and credit cards in more than 130 high-rise burglaries throughout South Florida.
Police said Spiderman used his agility and upper-body strength to climb quickly from one balcony to the next without ropes or hooks.
Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Ellen Leesfield on Monday sentenced James to two 20-year terms, which will run concurrently, for burglary of an unoccupied dwelling and grand theft. He must serve a 15-year minimum-mandatory term.
Before the sentencing, the judge Monday denied a motion for a new trial.