Tallahassee Man Sentenced to 30 Years Prison for Burglary and Theft

By: State Attorney’s Office, Second Judicial Circuit, Tallahassee, Florida
By: State Attorney’s Office, Second Judicial Circuit, Tallahassee, Florida

Tallahassee, Florida - April 19, 2011

This afternoon (April 18), Leon County Circuit Judge James C. Hankinson sentenced 31-year-old Joseph W. Atkins of Tallahassee to serve a total of 30 years in prison for Burglary of a Dwelling and Grand Theft.

Mr. Atkins had been charged with the burglary and theft back on June 2, 2009, after a home break-in was reported in Northwest Leon County. The burglary happened in broad daylight, while the victim was taking classes at school and while many people in the neighborhood were away at work.

After a jury trial on March 16, 2011, the jury found Mr. Atkins guilty as charged of Burglary of a Dwelling and Grand Theft. The passenger of the car testified that Mr. Atkins had her go to the door to the residence and knock to see if someone was home. After no one answered the knocking, Mr. Atkins then kicked open the front door, rummaged through the house and stole what he believed to be many items of value. The items he stole turned out to be costume jewelry. Mr. Atkins was found in possession of some of the stolen items shortly after the Burglary by the Leon County Sheriff’s Office.

Based upon the jury’s verdict and Mr. Atkins’ extensive criminal history, he qualified as an Habitual Felony Offender. He also qualified as a Prison Releasee Reoffender since he was released from prison within 3 years of committing these new crimes. These qualifications resulted in the 30 year prison sentence for Mr. Atkins.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorney Mike Bauer. Mr. Atkins was represented by Tallahassee attorney Alex Morris.


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  • by lostinlove on Apr 20, 2011 at 08:50 PM
    To Janet: Maybe you know nothing about there kid's mother. How and who are you to speak on peoples lives that you know absolutely nothing about???How can you even possibly attempt to judge a woman on who she falls in love with at a young age, a real young age, and end up starting a family??? Nobody has a right to cast stones at his wife or children.... They do not deserve it....Cast stones in the direction that they need to be thrown in....The opposite directions....Or at all "THE HATERS" that are eating this one up>>>
  • by Janet on Apr 20, 2011 at 03:38 PM
    I feel bad for his kids, but not the kids' mothers. They had to know what kind of POS this man is before they had a child with him. Poor little kids are brought into this world by people not equipped to be parents.
  • by Janet on Apr 20, 2011 at 03:33 PM
    I'm glad to read the kids are not following in their father's footsteps. Seeing who the judge was on this case makes me like him more. Fair but tough judge. Hoping he follows the jury's recommendation for Gary Hilton as well!
  • by Larry the cable Guy Location: Governors Square on Apr 20, 2011 at 10:22 AM
    This is a simple case of cross dressing. Obviously the man wanted some nice accessories and could not afford to purchase them. He will have time to wear all 200 pieces of costume jewelry in prison.
  • by Dee Location: quincy on Apr 20, 2011 at 09:00 AM
    I agree with his sentence because he obviously don't want to be outside of prison. People work to hard for what they have and to be invaded like that is horrible. The courts need to consider giving child molesters extensive sentences the first time instead of 5 years and probation...Hello they're going to do it again...and what they've messed up another child's life...
  • by Dr Dre Location: Music City on Apr 20, 2011 at 08:50 AM
    I am thankful for our State Attorney Mike Bauer for being perseverant in this case. his habitual felon has contributed nothing to anyone in society. He cheats on his wife with prostitutes because he is unable to attract a woman otherwise. He had prostitutes knock on doors because he was a coward. His children will read about their father when they grow up. I pray for their well being and hope they never have see the woman beating, drug dealing, pathological lying, pimp and criminal that he is. I pray for all of the victims including the prostitutes, his wife, the drug addicts he abused and most of all the children.
  • by Fed up Location: Leon County on Apr 20, 2011 at 04:34 AM
    I agree with Pam: A real man does not hit women. I noticed he robbed COSTUME Jewelry from a woman, actually a college student whose parents had worked hard to save and pay for her education. She was actually in class while Atkins was robbing her home. This has to make the " World's dumbest Criminals" Costume Jewelry? If Adkins mother had worked and saved like the victim perhaps her son would not be a career criminal. You know, he is not a very good criminal at that. 32 felonies is a lot for anyone to be caught for. I wonder if we should hide our earrings in case he gets out. I guess my fake pearl necklace will never be safe again. I am sure he stole some pant hose to put over his head like I see all of the time. I know his wife, momma, Aunt, and children are real proud about now. I also agree that his canteen money should be used for his children's care and not cheetos for himself. I am proud to pay taxes to keep cowards like this off of the street. OOps, our county commissioner wants him back on the street to keep the Hispanics from working.
    • reply
      by D.A.C.H. on Apr 20, 2011 at 08:59 PM in reply to Fed up
      Check this out... You do not know his children or his wife or you would know that his wife takes care of there kids. Always has and always will. You inconsiderate gossipers can't for one minute think that people change, sometimes for the worst, so how dare you, how dare you sit here and say how the kids mother is at fault for being young, dumb, and thought she was in love???
  • by Sad momma Location: Leon County on Apr 20, 2011 at 01:56 AM
    His Lawyer was white, the prosecutor was white, the judge was white. All them white peoples are prejudiced against my boy because he was robbin houses. HE be doin this because he liked white gurls. The NAACP ourght to protest my boy gey=tting prison because manly he was just a drug dealer and they didnt charge hin with dat. He didnt have 23 childrens /i dont think. And his wife doent know about all of that either. The government made them childrens up to make him look guilty. My boy never hurt anyone but those prostitute gurls. He was going to give them jewelry to apologize
  • by HMA on Apr 19, 2011 at 08:56 PM
    This guy will wind up costing the taxpayers a bundle. However, it's probably cheaper than the exponential cost of his probable random breeding.
  • by Anonymous on Apr 19, 2011 at 07:50 PM
    No one is talking about the innocent children involved. He should be ashamed as well as his mother for putting children in a bad situation. The state will find good homes for them and hopefully they will be healthy and happy citizens. A JURY passed judgement on this crime and other juries have done so with the 32 felonies listed on his rap sheet. God will forgive us all. My only comment about a child I make is to offer my prayers. I do feel the evidence proves beyond all doubt that Mr Atkins is a sociopath with no moral character.
    • reply
      by Lakeside on Apr 20, 2011 at 09:48 AM in reply to
      Maybe you should keep reading. I see multiple comments on his kids and how he shouldn't breed. The state doesn't need to find a home for his 3 kids that I know. They are happy and healthy and doing GREAT with their mom. They know know and love the Lord. And they will grow up to be wonderful citizens with alot to offer the world. Your prayers are welcomed and appreciated. Oh, and I agree 100% Joe "is a sociopath with no moral character".
    • reply
      by ANGRY on Apr 20, 2011 at 09:06 PM in reply to
      HIS KIDS ARE WELL TAKIN' CARE OF BUY THEIR MOTHER AND THE STATE IS NOT GOING TO PAY FOR A DIME OF THERE WELL-BEING NOR HAS IT. GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT YOU HAVE NOTHING BETTER TO DO WITH YOUR LIFE BUT TO HATE ON OTHER A@# people you stank B&(%)es!!!
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