116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids man who broke into a house and smashed a container with the homeowner’s father’s ashes was sentenced Friday to five years in prison.
Jay Robert Blank, 25, was convicted by a Linn County jury last month on a charge of third-degree burglary.
According to testimony, Blank kicked in the door of a Marion house belonging to Blake Taylor with the intent to fight Taylor because of an argument that started over text messages Feb. 16 of last year. Blank was upset because Taylor was late to help him with car repairs.
Taylor had left the house, and when he came back he discovered the break-in and damage to his drywall, cabinet and father’s ashes, according to court documents.
Sixth Judicial District Judge Christopher Bruns sentenced Blank to five years in prison.
Taylor did not attend the hearing.
Blank also is charged in a separate case with three counts of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance — marijuana, two counts of drug tax stamp violation, operating a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs — second offense and possession of a controlled substance — methamphetamine- penalty enhanced.
During a traffic stop on Midway Drive NW in Cedar Rapids on Dec. 6, an officer smelled marijuana coming Blank’s vehicle and conducted search, according to a criminal complaint. Officers found a backpack containing a jar of 4.2 grams of marijuana and $1,430 in cash. Blank appeared impaired and failed various field sobriety tests, police said.
After Blank was arrested, meth was found in his possession.
If convicted on those charges, he faces up to 19 years in prison.
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