Karl Sentences Laugh
Eight defendants appeared before Judge Mark A. Karl in Wetzel County Circuit Court on Feb. 25. During the session in open court two defendants were sentenced for their offenses, and one will face a trial next month.
Andrew Laugh, 21, of 134 Wetzel Street, Paden City, pleaded guilty to his one-count charge of the felony offense of manufacturing a controlled substance (marijuana) to have occurred June 22. Laugh was sentenced to the West Virginia Penitentiary for Men for a period of one to five years with credit for three days served. Pursuant to the plea agreement, the sentence is suspended to allow Laugh to serve two years of supervised probation. He is also ordered to pay court costs. During the hearing Wetzel County Prosecutor Timothy Haught noted Laugh has a serous drug problem, not just with marijuana but other substances as well. Therefore as a condition of probation Laugh is to successfully complete an out-patient drug treatment program at Westbrook Health Services in Parkersburg. Should he not successfully complete a drug treatment program, Laugh’s original sentence could be imposed.
Michael Stiles, 34, of HC 67 Box 61, Hundred, pleaded no contest Friday to the two domestic assault charges against him in Wetzel County Circuit Court. Present with his retained counsel, George Stanton, Stiles was sentenced to the Northern Regional Jail for six months for each count, to be served consecutively with credit for time served. However, pursuant to the plea agreement, Stiles will instead serve 60 days of incarceration in the Northern Regional Jail and then be placed on supervised probation for a period of five years. Stiles is also ordered to have no contact with his ex-girlfriend in the case.
During a bench trial in Wetzel County Magistrate Court on Aug. 31, Stiles was found guilty of the two counts of domestic assault, and a third charge of violation of a protective order was dismissed at that time. On Sept. 22, 2010, for each charge he was sentenced to six months in the Northern Regional Jail, to run concurrently, and ordered to pay $160.80 costs. Stiles was moving to appeal those charges in Wetzel County Circuit Court before ultimately pleading no contest.
According to the police report by Hundred Chief of Police Clay Lunceford, on June 9, 2010, Stiles’ ex-girlfriend and a child were standing near her car parked in front of the Hundred Laundromat when Stiles allegedly parked in front of her vehicle, backed up his car toward Union Bank, and sped toward the car. The ex-girlfriend pulled the child out of the path of the vehicle. Stiles then sped away, allegedly coming close to hitting another vehicle.
A trial date has been set in the case of John Cody Postlethwait, 19, of 715 5th Street, New Martinsville. During his hearing on Friday it was noted Postlethwait was not keeping in proper contact with his attorney, Kevin Neiswonger. Judge Karl gave Postlethwait a stern warning to keep in contact with his attorney, otherwise he would be sent to the Northern Regional Jail. Postlethwait’s bond continues until his trial date set for April 4 at 9 a.m. It is estimated the trial will last two days. Postlethwait faces a the felony offense of sexual assault in the second degree (counts one and two) and sexual abuse in the first degree (count three).