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Manchester woman sentenced for role in Deerfield home invasion
BRENTWOOD — A Manchester woman was sentenced to serve two to seven years in state prison Friday morning as part of a plea deal that will turn her into a key witness against two of her partners who allegedly carried out a brutal home invasion in Deerfield a year ago.
Sherri Avnet, 33, was sentenced on charges of conspiracy to commit burglary and conspiracy to commit theft by unauthorized taking.
Avnet and two other men decided to break into a Deerfield home on June 29, 2011, that led to the beating of homeowner Dr. Arthur Cutter.
“This happens to be the one-year anniversary of this heinous crime,” Cutter said to a judge Friday morning. “This (Jacob) Palo gentleman beat me severely. … I still carry a gun around my own house and it's pretty scary.”
Palo, 35, of Concord is set to go on trial for first-degree assault and 22 other charges on Oct. 1 in Rockingham County Superior Court.
Christopher Martin, 39, of Danbury, is also set for trial on charges that he picked Cutter as the target for the armed robbery and break-in.
Deputy County Attorney Tom Reid said that Avnet played a significant role in the home invasion, carrying a backpack and some bleach to the scene, and acting as the getaway driver.
“The main rationale (for the agreement) is that she cooperated early on,” Reid said.
Avnet was supposed to be sentenced after she had fulfilled her obligation to testify against Palo and Martin, but both of those cases were continued to a later date.
Prosecutors could still impose more prison time on Avnet if she fails to testify truthfully at the upcoming trials.
She was given a suspended three- to six-year prison sentence on the theft charge. Prosecutors can ask to impose that prison term within the next 10 years.
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