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Maine Given 40 Years For Murder

By Staff | Dec 2, 2009

Robert A. Maine Jr.

Robert A. Maine, Jr., 31, of 14 Rose St., New Martinsville admitted Monday to killing his cousin, Greg Maine, on March 7, 2009 with a high powered rifle in New Martinsville.

Present in Wetzel County Circuit Court with his attorneys Kevin Neiswonger and Tom White, Maine pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced by Judge David Hummel to the maximum term of 40 years in the West Virginia State Penitentiary for Men as laid out in a plea agreement. Maine was originally charged with one count of first-degree murder.

Wetzel County Prosecutor Tim Haught stated he believed the state could go to trial with this case and prove all of the elements of second-degree murder, including testimony from two witnesses from the night of the murder.

According to reports, the defendant and Greg Maine were partying and consuming alcohol when they got into a petty fight. The defendant then went into a bedroom and called for Greg Maine to come to the room, from where witnesses heard a gunshot.

Robert Maine fled the scene and Greg Maine was found dead on the bedroom floor. Other evidence include the medical examiner’s confirmation of death by a gunshot wound to the head, and the retrieved rifle, bullet, and shell casing. The defendant was apprehended the next day in Wheeling and made a statement confessing to shooting his cousin. Haught said although the state had sufficient evidence to establish second-degree murder beyond a reasonable doubt, in evaluating the case the state agreed to enter the plea agreement.

When Hummel asked why he believes he is guilty Maine replied, “I believe I’m guilty because I got the gun and I shot and killed him.”

Maine is remanded to the Northern Regional Jail and will then be transferred to the West Virginia State Penitentiary for Men. He will serve 40 years with credit for time served.

Roger L. Shuman Sr., 54, of 296 North State Route 2, Lot 95W, New Martinsville, was granted a Rule 35, reduction of sentence, motion on Nov. 30. Shuman was found guilty of failing to register as a sexual offender in a trial held in Wetzel County Circuit Court trial on May 12.

He was sentenced to one to five years incarceration and was told he could be considered for a reduction in sentence to two years probation after serving 30 days. Due to a back operation and recommendations by his surgeon, Shuman did not report until Nov. 20. He was allowed to maintain his cane, back brace, and prescription pain medication in jail.

However, he was not given his pain medication and was instead given standard over-the-counter medications that still left Shuman in a great deal of pain. It was therefore requested that Shuman be reconsidered for probation prematurely due to his good behavior and alleged mistreatment in the Northern Regional Jail.

Tim Haught said that under this special circumstance, the state had no objection to the request. “It’s always difficult to address these issues,” said Haught. “But the concern I have is the expense the state will have to incur if Shuman is incarcerated. Under these circumstances the state has no problem with putting Shuman under two years supervised probation.” Hummel granted the motion and Shuman is ordered to register with the sex offender registry and begin his probation immediately.

Rebecca Dawn Beltran, 20, of RR 1 Box 87 Carmichael, Glen Easton, W.Va., pleaded innocent at her formal arraignment in court Monday with public defender Jeremiah Gardner. She is facing a two-count indictment: count one, felony offense of entry of a building other than a dwelling to have allegedly occurred between July 16 and 24, 2008, in which she entered a building belonging to Carl Nelson on Commercial St., New Martinsville, with the intent to commit a larceny; and count two, felony grand larceny to have allegedly occurred between the dates of July 16 and 24, 2008, with the value of $1,000 or more of paintball guns and equipment that belonged to Nelson. The defendant requested a motion for discovery and will return to court Dec. 29 for a mandatory status conference.

Tyler Joseph Steed, 20, of P.O. Box 61, Caldwell, Ohio, also appeared in court on Nov. 30 intending to move forward with a plea. However, due to time away from his attorney over the holiday, the defendant feels more time is needed. In an earlier court hearing, Steed entered a plea of innocent on his charge of one felony count of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver. Steed is to return Dec. 29 at 9:15 a.m.