Defendants Return To Circuit Court
Several defendants appeared in Wetzel County Circuit Court on March 18 and March 21 to continue matters before Judge Mark A. Karl. The following individuals will return to court next week.
The discussion of bond has been reopened in the case of John Michael Howell, 42, of HC 61 Box 114, New Martinsville, who appeared in Wetzel County Circuit Court on March 21 alongside his retained counsel, Keith Hart. Attorney Hart filed a motion to reconsider the court’s ruling on Howell’s bond, and as such Judge Karl set a return date to discuss the matter once again on April 5 at 1:30 p.m. Howell was remanded to the Northern Regional Jail.
On Jan. 18 Howell pleaded innocent to his four-count indictment charging him with felony offenses of a sexual and violent nature said to have occurred on or about Dec. 14 in Wetzel County.
Howell faces one count each of the felony offenses of kidnapping, second degree attempted sexual assault, first degree sexual assault, and malicious assault (respective to counts one through four) for acts committed against his wife. The two had been separated since August and have a child in common.
Howell allegedly attacked the victim when she attempted to leave his residence after picking up the child. The victim was flown from Wetzel County Hospital to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown. Upon his arrest the evening of Dec. 14, Howell was found with scratches around his left eye, left side, and a bruise on his left arm.
Meanwhile, as the end of this term of court nears, trial dates may soon be set for a few individuals in Wetzel County Circuit Court.
Warren Todd Wade, 46, of HC 68 Box 21, Wileyville, appeared in circuit court alongside appointed counsel Kevin Neiswonger, who requested more time to review matters in Wade’s cases. Wetzel County Prosecutor Timothy Haught shared with the court that the state is prepared for trial. Notably, each case is different from one another, and as such a separate trial is needed for each. Judge Karl set a return date of April 4 at 1:30 p.m. wherein it will be decided if Wade will go to trial, or waive term of court. Wade was remanded to the NRJ.
On Jan. 17 Wade was handed a two-count indictment this term for offenses said to have occurred in Wetzel County on or about June 7.
Count one charges Wade with the felony offense of fleeing from an officer while DUI wherein he allegedly, being under the influence of alcohol at the time, fled in a vehicle on state Route 7 from Deputy R. L. Scott Jr., who was acting in his official capacity as a deputy for the Wetzel County Sheriff’s Office, after Deputy Scott had activated his blue lights in an attempt to stop the vehicle.
Count two charges Wade with the felony offense of driving under the influence of alcohol wherein he allegedly drove a vehicle on state Route 7 while under the influence of alcohol in the above outlined incident.
On Oct. 4 Wade entered innocent pleas to a total of 11 indictments from the September 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, 2010, 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.
Similarly, the state is ready to go to trial in the case of Rodney Lee Nolan, 25, of HC 62, Box 50A, Burton. Judge Karl stated that Nolan would return April 5 at 1:30 p.m., and that if the case is not resolved by that date, a trial date will be set. Nolan’s bond continues.
Nolan is indicted on three counts of burglary alleged to have occurred between Oct. 1 and Nov. 1, 2008. Count one charges Nolan with breaking and entering the residence of Clint. W. Jones, located on County Route 66, commonly known as Harker Run Road, Wetzel County. Count two charges him with breaking and entering the residence of William Lane and Sandra Lane, located on Long Drain/Earnshaw Road. Count three charges Nolan with breaking and entering the residence of Millar P. Cayavec, located on Higginbotham Run Road in Wetzel County.
Howard Ray Starkey, 23, of 1026 Third Street, New Martinsville, also appeared in court on March 21. Attorney Neiswonger stated he wanted one last attempt at getting the case resolved, and so Judge Karl set a return date of April 4 at 1:30 p.m. Starkey’s bond continues.
Starkey received a four-count indictment for his offenses said to have occurred between Feb. 15 and March 24 in Wetzel County.
Counts one and three charge Starkey with the felony offense of burglary in that he allegedly entered the residence of Robert and Ruth Starkey located at HC 62, Box 40, Pine Grove, with the intent to commit a crime in two occurrences.
Counts two and four charge Starkey with the felony offense of grand larceny wherein he allegedly stole firearms having a cumulative value of more than $1,000 belonging to Robert Michael King at two separate occasions.
In another matter, a suppression hearing request was granted for Justin C. Riggs, 22, of 558 Kappel Street, New Martinsville, who will return for such a hearing on April 5 at 1:30 p.m. Riggs was remanded to the NRJ.
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.
The remaining defendants appeared for brief hearings wherein return dates were scheduled.
A plea agreement is close to being reached in the case of Benjamin Joseph Dotson, 30, of 2503 Beverly Street, Parkersburg, W.Va. Dotson was remanded to the NRJ and will return April 5 at 1:30 p.m.
On Feb. 9 Dotson pleaded innocent to each of his eight charges in Wetzel County Circuit Court. Dotson was handed three-count and five-count indictments for his offenses involving attempted theft and possession of controlled substances with the intent to deliver.
Regarding his three-count indictment, count one charges that between June 24-25 in Wetzel County Dotson allegedly committed the offense of entry of a building other than a dwelling in that he did break and enter a building commonly know as the Robert C. Byrd Center, housing the offices of the Town of Pine Grove and the Wetzel County Committee on Aging, located in Pine Grove with the intent to commit a larceny therein.
Count two alleges that during this same time and location Dotson committed the misdemeanor offense of petit larceny in that he stole, took, and carried away goods and chattels having a cumulative value of less than $1,000, belonging to the Town of Pine Grove and the Wetzel County Committee on Aging, with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of said goods.
Count three charges Dotson with the misdemeanor offense of destruction of property for allegedly forcing open a window and multiple doors in the Robert C. Byrd Center in Pine Grove, thereby damaging the said window and doors.
Regarding his five-count indictment, counts one through five charge that Dotson allegedly possessed various controlled substances, those being: Xanax, a Schedule IV controlled substance; Vicodin, a Schedule III controlled substance; Lortab, a Schedule III controlled substance; Lorcet, a Schedule III controlled substance; and Dolophine, a Schedule II controlled substance, respectively, with the intent to deliver those same substances on or about Nov. 27 in Wetzel County.
Dotson is presently being held in the NRJ on a $40,000 bond for his Wetzel County charges, but is also being held without bond for charges in Mercer County.
Kevin E. Burress, 34, of 111 Brewster Lane, Cedar Bluff, Va., appeared in Wetzel County Circuit Court alongside Attorney Jeremiah Gardner to begin a voluntariness hearing. However, codefendant Wesley L. Burress, 35, of 315 Brewster Lane, Cedar Bluff, Va., was not able to appear. As they share the case, the voluntariness hearing was postponed. Kevin E. Burress will return to court April 4 at 1:30 p.m. His bond continues.
On Jan. 26 Kevin and Wesley Burress, along with Joshua S. Dye, 21, of 2331 Mill Creek Road, Raven, Va., entered innocent pleas for their one-count indictments in connection to an attempted burglary.
The three allegedly worked together in attempting to perform an act of theft on or about Nov. 11 in Wetzel County which resulted in the receipt of one count each against them.
Joshua Dye and Kevin Burress are charged with one count each of attempted entry of a building other than a dwelling for allegedly attempting to break and enter Norris Pharmacy located in Pine Grove with the intent to commit a larceny therein.
Wesley Burress is charged with one count of aiding and abetting attempted entry of a building other than a dwelling for allegedly counseling with, aiding, and abetting Joshua Dye and Kevin Burress to attempt to break and enter Norris Pharmacy located in Pine Grove.
Justin Raymond Wyatt, 22, of 1000 Chapline Street, Wheeling, will return to Wetzel County Circuit Court on April 4 at 1:30 p.m. His bond continues.
On Jan. 26 Wyatt and codefendant Jaynathan Earl Jones, 21, of New Martinsville, entered pleas of innocence to their one count indictment each of first degree robbery for their acts said to have occurred on or about Sept. 8 in Wetzel County.
Jones and Wyatt allegedly committed robbery by striking and beating a male individual and stealing that individual’s wallet and money in New Martinsville.
Roger Kent Boggess III, 21, of P.O. Box 227, Hundred, appeared in Wetzel County Circuit Court on March 21 alongside Attorney Frederick Gardner, who stated additional time was still needed to review matters in the case. Boggess’ bond continues and he will return April 4 at 1:30 p.m.
On Jan. 26 Boggess remained silent as the court entered innocent pleas to his three-count indictment for his offenses said to have occurred on or about Oct. 1 in Wetzel County.
Count one charges Boggess with possession of marijuana, a Schedule I controlled substance, with the intent to deliver the same; count two alleges Boggess possessed Hydrocodone, a Schedule III controlled substance, with the intent to deliver the same; and count three charges Boggess with possession of Oxycodone, a Schedule II controlled substance with the intent to deliver the same.
Stephanie Nicole Fox, 20, of HC 61 Box 95C, Littleton, must wait until April 4 at 1:30 p.m. to see how the state responds to the plea offer made by the defense.
Co-defendant Larry Virgil Watson III, 18, of HC 61 Box 95 B, Littleton, will also return April 4 at 1:30 p.m. to continue matters in his case. Both defendants are out on bond.
Fox and Watson were handed a one-count indictment each for the felony offense of manufacturing a controlled substance (marijuana) wherein on or about Sept. 27 in Wetzel County the two allegedly manufactured, by cultivation, marijuana, a Schedule I controlled substance.
Lastly, Andrew William Richard, 22, of 28 Rose St., Lot 80 N, New Martinsville, appeared in Wetzel County Circuit Court on a petition to revoke probation on March 18. Appearing without counsel, Judge Karl tentatively appointed Jeremiah Gardner to the defendant, as he had represented him in a prior case. Richard was ordered to fill out an affidavit and will return April 4 at 1:30 p.m.
In 2007, Richard is alleged to have stolen cigarettes from Mayo’s Exxon valued at less than $1,000. A recommended stay at the Anthony Center for youthful offenders in Greenbrier County was his sentence given by Judge Madden. Following successful completion of his sentence at the center, Richard was granted two years supervised probation by Judge Hummel.