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Judge Sets Riggs Trail Date

By Staff | Sep 14, 2011

Justin C. Riggs

Justin C. Riggs, 23, of 558 Kappel Street, New Martinsville, appeared before Judge Mark A. Karl in Marshall County Circuit Court on Monday to seek a trial date in that county following the defense’s recently granted motion for change of venue. Judge Karl stated the earliest trial date available was Nov. 14. With that said, Riggs waived Marshall County’s term of court, which ends Nov. 7, and was remanded to the Northern Regional Jail. He will return Nov. 14 at 9 a.m. for his anticipated two-day trial in Marshall County.

On Aug. 16 Riggs was granted a motion for change of venue after Judge Mark A. Karl heard arguments from Riggs’ attorney, Brent Clyburn, and Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Carl “Worthy” Paul regarding Riggs’ recent mistrial in Wetzel County Circuit Court.

While publicity of the case was first targeted as the cause for many Wetzel County jurors to step down, it was learned more jurors were lost when asked if they would believe testimony from a member of law enforcement over other witnesses.

On Jan. 26 Justin Riggs and codefendant Amanda D. Riggs, 23, of 558 Kappel Street, New Martinsville, entered innocent pleas to their two counts each of child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury and malicious assault, felonious offenses said to have occurred on or about Feb. 18, 2010, in Wetzel County.

Amanda and Justin Riggs allegedly abused their minor child and caused bodily injury to their child with the intent to maim, disfigure, or kill, by inflicting injuries to the child’s skull.

On July 25, Amanda Riggs pleaded guilty to count one of the indictment via a plea agreement and was sentenced to two to 10 years in the West Virginia Penitentiary for Women. In accordance with the plea agreement, she has agreed to testify truthfully against Justin Riggs.