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Woman pleads guilty to burglary while homeowners slept

A woman on Monday told a Kanawha circuit judge she was too high on Xanax to remember why she broke into two homes in Kanawha City while their owners slept inside in 2018.

Victoria Leigh Critchfield, 26, of Charleston, pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count of escape before Judge Charles King Monday morning.

In exchange for Critchfield’s guilty pleas, King approved a plea deal in which Kanawha Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Maryclaire Akers agreed to drop charges of breaking without entering and forgery and uttering.

King accepted Critchfield’s guilty pleas and scheduled her sentencing hearing for Aug. 27.

Each count of burglary carries a sentence of between one and 15 years in prison, and the escape conviction comes with a prison sentence of between one and five years.

Critchfield said she didn’t remember much about breaking into two homes in Kanawha City on May 15, 2018, because she had used Xanax earlier that night.

She said she went into the homes and stole from the homeowners while they were asleep.

“I was messed up on drugs,” Critchfield said when King asked her why she broke into the homes. “I really don’t remember, but I remember the next day waking up with stolen property from the houses.”

Critchfield told King she thought she broke a window to enter one home.

On April 3, 2019, Charleston police had taken Critchfield into custody and she attempted to escape.

“When they picked me up I didn’t want to go to jail, so I ran,” Critchfield said.

She said she was able to get out of her handcuffs while she sat in the back of the police vehicle, and when the officer opened the door she ran. The officer caught up with her three blocks away from the vehicle.

Critchfield is incarcerated at South Central Regional Jail.

Reach Lacie Pierson at, 304-348-1723 or follow

@laciepierson on Twitter.

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