Terry Helbing was arrested on June 1, 2010, after allegedly swiping 40 paintings and prints estimated at $15,000 from the San Francisco Botanical Garden’s horticulture library. Police later found a trove of other artworks inside Helbing’s residence in the 400 block of Ellis Street.
Helbing, 53, had been facing 28 felony counts, but on Jan. 5 in San Francisco Superior Court, he agreed to plead guilty to two counts, burglary and receiving stolen property.
His attorney, Kenneth Quigley, had argued at Helbing’s preliminary court hearing last August that his client had mental health issues and an IQ of 66.
Botanical Garden officials had said at the time of Helbing’s arrest that he frequented the garden often and would attend art exhibition openings there.