ITHACA, N.Y. – The final person involved in a robbery that left a Newfield man dead in December 2016 will serve prison time, a judge ruled this week.
Dennis Lampila, 40, who was originally charged with second-degree murder and first-degree robbery, pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery in October as part of a plea deal. He appeared for sentencing Thursday in Tompkins County Court.
Since his initial arrest, Lampila has refused three plea bargains, his attorney Joseph Joch said during his sentencing.
“He quite obviously reluctantly accepted this plea because he had inadequate access to counsel,” Joch said.
Lampila’s attorney argued that his client maintained that he became involved in the crime not knowing that a robbery had been planned.
Related: Newfield homicide: Man takes robbery plea in exchange for possible testimony during murder trial
“To say he didn’t know a robbery was happening when he pulled the ski mask over his face is just revisionist history,” District Attorney Matthew Van Houten said at Lampila’s sentencing. “All the other defendants have accepted their responsibility in one way or another.”
Lampila was the last of four people to be sentenced for crimes related to the robbery which led to the death of Camden Rundell, 30, at his home in Newfield on Dec. 2, 2016. Police ruled his death a homicide. Testimony during a previous trial and records show that he died during or after a drug robbery.
Colleen McColgin, Melissa Minnick, Jamie Gerhart and Roy Clements Jr. have all since been sentenced for related crimes.
In a trial last November which lasted nearly three weeks, Clements — who was facing felony second-degree murder, first-degree robbery and fourth-degree conspiracy charges — was unanimously found not-guilty by a Tompkins County jury.
Related: NOT GUILTY: Jury unanimously finds Roy Clements Jr. not guilty of alleged Newfield murder, robbery
Gerhart, sentenced on Feb. 5, is the only other defendant who is serving jail time for first-degree robbery.
Kimberly DeCoudres, the mother of Rundell, sat in the courtroom to address Lampila during Thursday’s sentencing.
“I think it is outrageous that four people received consequences, yet the person who was primarily responsible for my son’s murder has walked free,” DeCoudres said. “What has given me comfort is that karma, the force that makes sure what goes around comes around, gives me hope. I have faith that in this case, karma is going to make sure, Mr. Lampila, that your day will come, and I assume it will probably be as ugly or uglier than the day you were involved in the murder of my son.”
Judge Joseph R. Cassidy sentenced Lampila to the recommended five years in prison with a two-and-a-half year term of post-release supervision.
“The system is often more baffling than it is comforting,” Cassidy said as he addressed DeCoudres. “I acknowledge that.”