A Peoria man was sentenced Friday to 30 years in prison for participating in a March 2009 heist of a Chillicothe gas station.


A Peoria man was sentenced Friday to 30 years in prison for participating in a March 2009 heist of a Chillicothe gas station.

Anthony L. Parks, 26, of 721 E. Kansas St. took issue with Assistant State’s Attorney Jeremy Beard, saying he wasn’t “a waste to society.” The prosecutor had argued for close to 40 years behind bars, saying Parks had done nothing but break the law and get into trouble.

Peoria County Circuit Judge Steve Kouri, before passing sentence, said he didn’t know if waste to society was a proper term but that Parks was a “danger to society.”

Parks was convicted in December of armed robbery in connection with the March 30, 2009, incident at Circle K, 1022 N. Fourth St., and had faced up to 45 years behind bars. His attorney, Joseph Borsberry, asked for the minimum of 21 years, saying his client was a father, had held jobs and wasn’t a total loss.

But Beard hammered on Parks’ criminal record, which includes a dozen or so traffic offenses, two felonies as a juvenile and a few misdemeanors.

At the Circle K, a clerk and a customer said three masked people entered the business, demanded money and ordered people to the ground. The customer said one of the robbers took his wallet. The clerk told police she was ordered to open the cash register. Her purse also was taken, prosecutors said in court.

The robbers fled, and the case was cold until scientists were able to match DNA found on a discarded mask to James Ford, 27. Ford then talked to police and fingered Jeannie M. Kirscher, 26, as the driver.

Kirscher, who had no record, has since pleaded guilty and been sentenced to probation and six months in jail. Ford was sentenced in May to 25 years behind bars.

With credit for time served and day-for-day “good time” credit, Parks could get out of prison in less than 14 years.