Mountain Center Market burglar sentenced to state prison

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Nickolas Melendez, 27, of Cabazon, one of two men who pleaded guilty to burglary of the Mountain Center Market in September, was sentenced to two years and eight months in state prison.

Judge Mark Mandio dispensed the sentence Friday, May 6, nearly a week after Melendez missed the original sentencing hearing.

Melendez had a prior conviction that Mandio said qualified as a strike; however, he imposed a lower-term sentence.

Ryan Mason, 25, of Hemet, who also pleaded guilty, has undergone an evaluation for possible residential substance-abuse treatment prior to the felony settlement conference. Mandio requested the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Corrections Division to conduct the assessment. As a result of the report, Mason’s sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 26 while he completes a program.

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