Fitbit bandit’s convictions upheld, but 1 count erroneously entered

A man who orchestrated the heist of a big rig trailer filled with Fitbits lost his appeal Wednesday, but a panel of judges tossed one of the convictions entered against the thief after finding it didn’t jibe with the jury’s verdict.

A Hendricks Circuit jury convicted Ernest Ray Snow Jr. of Level 5 felony counts of burglary, theft and conversion and Level 6 felony auto theft. He was sentenced to an aggregate 14 years in prison after sentencing enhancements for committing a felony while a member of a criminal organization and for being a habitual offender.

According to the record, Snow agreed in May 2017 to give 10 pairs of shoes to a forklift driver at Ingram Micro in exchange for information about security at the warehouse for the company that distributes mobile devices. The forklift driver told Snow about a trailer loaded with Fitbits, and a short time later, “a semi-tractor was stolen from a facility in Plainfield, and that semi-tractor was used to steal the trailer full of Fitbits from Ingram Micro.”

Company security professionals tracked the trailer to a location at 3524 N. Shadeland Ave. in Indianapolis. There, a business provided video evidence of Snow unloading boxes of the personal fitness devices and taking them to Caldwell Automotive, Judge Edward Najam wrote for the Indiana Court of Appeals panel. Police later executed a search warrant and found multiple boxes of Fitbits at Caldwell Automotive.

A subsequent search of Snow’s residence turned up seven Fitbits and accessories. Text messages on his phone also implicated him in the heist.

The jury convicted Snow as charged. The appellate panel rejected Snow’s claims that the search warrant for his home lacked probable cause, that the evidence against him was insufficient and that the criminal organization enhancement was improper.

The panel did, however, remand the case with instructions to vacate one of two burglary convictions entered on the judgment of conviction and sentencing order, because the jury convicted him of just one burglary count. “We affirm Snow’s convictions, but we remand with instructions to enter judgment of conviction consistent with the jury’s verdicts and to resentence Snow accordingly,” the panel concluded.

The case is Ernest Ray Snow, Jr. v. State of Indiana19A-CR-949.

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