Court Decision Expected
Judge Mark A. Karl is expected to render a decision in Wetzel County Circuit Court Friday after a lengthy hearing Dec. 6 concerning a defendant who was rejected from the Anthony Center for Youthful Offenders.
Currently held in the Northern Regional Jail, Matthew Lee Farmer, 19, has served nearly 13 months incarceration between his time at the NRJ and at the Anthony Center for Youthful Offenders. Farmer appeared Nov. 16 after being returned to the court for participating at an unsatisfactory level at the Anthony Center. On Monday Attorney Roger Weese asked the court to consider how minor many of Farmer’s infractions were, noting that the most severe violation was smoking in his dorm room. He also stated his client wants to finish the program, as he had made substantial progress.
Based on the opinion of the Anthony Center’s warden, Wetzel County Prosecutor Tim Haught made the argument that Farmer is unfit for the Anthony Center and recommended he be remanded to serve his original sentence with credit for time served. “I believe the infractions are significant,” Haught said, adding that in his many years as prosecutor he’s only seen about four inmates returned from the center in such an instance.
The court then heard testimony via video conference from a representative at the Anthony Center. When asked exactly how much of the program Farmer had completed, the witness said Farmer had actually not completed much of the program at all, unlike Weese’s earlier argument. Judge Karl asked the individual if the center would accept Farmer back into the center, to which the witness made it clear that if the court ordered his return, they would take him back, but that such a case didn’t mean the center wanted him back.
Weese then spoke to the center representative about the seemingly petty nature of the 11 write-ups against Farmer. The witness replied sternly that in his opinion refusing to follow orders at the center is a serious matter.
On April 2 Farmer pleaded guilty to grand larceny in Judge Hummel’s courtroom. Hummel sentenced Farmer to the West Virginia Penitentiary for Men for one to 10 years with credit for 155 days served. However, alternative sentencing was further imposed.
Treating Farmer as a youthful offender, Hummel ordered Farmer to be placed at the Anthony Correctional Center for six months to two years. Hummel ordered Farmer to successfully complete the program or else his original sentence would be implemented.
On or about Oct. 30, 2009, Farmer was picked up with Samuel James Allen Wells in New Martinsville after being stopped by police for running a red light. Soon after receiving a citation for the traffic violation, it was determined they possessed stolen property and the two men were picked up. The stolen property, including a computer, PlayStation 2, and cigarettes, were recovered.
Also, Warren Todd Wade, 46, of HC 68, Box 21, Wileyville, was present in Wetzel County Circuit Court Dec. 6 alongside Attorney Gardner. A bench conference was held during the hearing that ended in Judge Karl’s ruling to continue Wade’s case into the next term of court. Wade is remanded to the Northern Regional Jail to await a court date in January.
On Oct. 4 Wade entered innocent pleas to a total of 11 indictments this term. Wade received a three-count indictment for his offenses, said to have occurred on or about Sept. 11. Counts one and two of this indictment charge Wade with the felony offense of wanton endangerment involving a firearm in that he allegedly pointed a firearm at Cpl Roger G. Spragg II and Deputy R. L. Scott Jr. in Wetzel County. Count three charges Wade with the misdemeanor offense of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in that he did possess a firearm and had been convicted of one count of grand larceny during the month of September 2007 in Wetzel County.
In his second indictment, Wade is charged with one count each of the felony offense of sexual assault in the first degree and sexual abuse by a custodian wherein between Jan. 1 and Feb. 28 Wade, being 14 years old or more, allegedly engaged in sexual intercourse with a female child, who was younger than 12 years old and was not married to Wade. Count two of the indictment alleges that between the same span of time Wade engaged in sexual intercourse with a female child under his care, custody, or control.
Wade’s third indictment charges him with one count each of the felony offense of fleeing from an officer while driving under the influence and driving under the influence of alcohol wherein on or about June 7 Wade, being under the influence of alcohol, fled in an all terrain vehicle on state Route 7 in Wetzel County from Deputy R. L. Scott Jr. after Deputy Scott had activated his blue lights in an attempt to stop the vehicle. Count two of this indictment alleges that on or about the same date Wade drove an all terrain vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.
In his fourth indictment Wade is charged with one count each of the felony offense of entry of a building other than a dwelling and grand larceny wherein between Sept. 7 and Sept. 8 Wade allegedly entered Gary Cecil Motors in New Martinsville. Count two of the indictment alleges that during that time Wade stole a Ford F-150 pick-up truck having a value of more than $1,000 belonging to Gary Cecil Motors.
Wade is also charged with one count of the felony offense of sexual abuse in the first degree wherein on or about Feb. 7 he allegedly engaged in sexual contact with a named male.
Lastly, Wade is charged with one count of the felony offense of receiving stolen goods wherein between April 28 and June 7 Wade allegedly received a stolen 2006 Kawasaki Model 750 all terrain vehicle in Wetzel County which he knew or had reason to believe had been stolen.