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Defendants Are Arraigned In Circuit Court

By Staff | Feb 29, 2012

The following defendants were arraigned in Wetzel County Circuit Court on Feb. 22 and Feb. 24. Judge Mark A. Karl presided over the hearings and set return dates for later this month through March.

Thomas Edward Welch, 48, of RR 124, Proctor, appeared for his arraignment alongside Attorney Thomas White. Welch pleaded innocent to his charge of failure to register as a sex offender, an offense alleged to have occurred on or about Oct. 28, 2011. The judge set a return date for March 7 at 1:30 p.m. Welch was remanded to the Northern Regional Jail.

Robbin Sue Norris, 36, of P. O. Box 144, Hundred, remained silent as the court entered innocent pleas on her behalf to her 18 counts of forgery and uttering offenses. Her bond continues and she will return to circuit court on March 9 at 10:30 a.m.

Norris received an 18-count felony indictment, all of the forgery and uttering offenses are to have occurred in 2011 on the account of Frances C. Finnin and Carolyn D. Crone-Aamot. There are eight counts each of forgery and uttering at B & C Deli for checks totaling $976 and one count each of forgery and uttering for a check in the amount of $76 at Koontz’s Country Cupboard.

Cheyenne Sellers, 21, of 136 Cox St., New Martinsville, pleaded innocent to each of 14 counts against him. Following his arraignment, Sellers was remanded to the NRJ. He will return to circuit court on March 7 at 1:30 p.m.

Wetzel County Grand Jurors handed Sellers five indictments totaling 14 true bills this term of court. A two-count indictment charges him with felony entry of a dwelling and misdemeanor petit larceny. Both allege that between July 2010 and Aug. 22, 2010, he, during the daytime, entered without breaking a dwelling house of Mike Anderson in New Martinsville with the intent to commit a crime therein and take away goods or chattels valued at less than $1,000 belonging to Anderson.

Another two-count indictment charges him with felony entry of a dwelling and misdemeanor petit larceny. Both allege that on Oct. 3, 2009, he, during the daytime, entered without breaking a dwelling house of Harry Campbell in New Martinsville with the intent to commit a crime therein and take away a Smith & Wesson 357 caliber revolver valued at less than $1,000 belonging to Campbell.

A four-count felony indictment includes two counts each of forgery and uttering for allegedly forging and employing as true checks written in the amounts of $100 and $200 on the account of James D. Furbee II to Mayo’s Exxon

A two-count felony indictment charges him with felony forgery and uttering, respectively, for allegedly forging and employing as true a check written in the amount of $60 on the account of Sgt. Harry E. Campbell, a retired New Martinsville Police Department officer, and Cynthia A. Starkey on Aug. 1, 2010, to Witschey’s Market, Inc.

A four-count felony indictment includes two counts each of forgery and uttering for allegedly forging and employing as true checks written in the amounts of $335 and $520 on the account of M & H Trucking to Witschey’s Market, Inc.

Jay R. Work, 50, of 291 North Street, New Martinsville, pleaded innocent to his one count charge of fraud. Following his arraignment on Friday the judge set a return date of March 5 at 10 a.m. Work’s bond continues.

Work is charged with welfare fraud for allegedly obtaining, by misrepresent- ation, welfare assistance in excess of $500 to which he was not entitled, by failing to report income received during his employment.

Larry Joe George, 29, of P.O. Box 67, Reader, and Tiffany Rose Morgan, 21, of HC 60, Box 70, Pine Grove, both appeared in circuit court to be arraigned on their identical charges. Both entered innocent pleas to all of their charges. George will return to court March 7 at 1:30 p.m., and Morgan is set to return March 5 at 10 a.m. Their bonds continue.

The two were each handed a three-count indictment for burglary-related offenses said to have occurred on or about June 24 in Wetzel County against Ronnie Goodrich.

Count one charges the duo with daytime burglary for allegedly breaking into the dwelling house of Goodrich, located near Jacksonburg, with the intent to commit a crime therein.

Count two states they committed the offense of entry of a building other than a dwelling for entering a locked garage near Goodrich’s dwelling.

Count three charges them with the misdemeanor offense of petit larceny for carrying away firearms having a cumulative value of less than $1,000 belonging to Goodrich.

Johnna Watson, 19, of P. O. Box 125, Littleton, entered pleas of innocence to her three counts of burglary and battery during her arraignment in court. A return date is set for March 7 at 1:30 p.m. Watson’s bond continues.

Watson was given a three-count indictment felony nighttime burglary and two misdemeanor counts of battery. The offenses are alleged to have occurred on Jan. 27, 2011, at the residence of Mary Elizabeth Leon-Miller in Littleton. The battery charges allege that Watson made physical contact in an insulting or provoking nature with Leon-Miller and Michael R. Miller.

Charles Robert Wells, 45, of 247 Lang Dr., New Martinsville, pleaded innocent to his one-count felony charge of third-offense domestic battery. He is alleged to have struck his girlfriend in the face with his hand and kicked her in the ribs with his foot on Oct. 24, 2011. The judge set a return date of March 7 at 1:30 p.m. to continue matters in the case. Wells’ bond continues.

Benjamin Dale Francis, 32, of 1014 Third Street, New Martinsville, appeared for his arraignment on Feb. 22 wherein he entered innocent pleas to each of his charges of conspiracy to deliver controlled substances as well as his additional charge of attempting to disarm a law enforcement officer. Attorney Jeremiah Gardner then noted he had filed a motion to reduce Francis’ bond which is presently set at $50,000 cash only.

“Individuals are entitled to a reasonable bond,” Gardner said. “This bond is excessive.” The state argued Francis was a flight risk based on the fact that Francis is facing a second offense felony recidivist charge. Furthermore, he is alleged to have attempted to disarm a police officer, therefore posing Francis as a danger to the public. “We feel the bond is appropriate,” Wetzel County Prosecuting Attorney Timothy Haught resolved.

“At this time I am not inclined to reduce bond,” Judge Karl decided as he told those present he would do some investigating of his own on the matter. Francis was remanded to the NRJ and will return March 7 at 1:30 p.m.

Codefendant Jeffery Allen Dawson, 26, of Route 1, Box 16, Folsom, pleaded innocent to each of his six counts of conspiracy and one count of second degree robbery during his arraignment on Feb 24. He will return to circuit court on March 5 at 10 a.m. His bond continues.

Francis and Dawson, along with Cynthia R. Smith, 23, of 618 North Fourth Avenue, Paden City, were each handed a six-count indictment charging them with the repeated offense of conspiracy said to have occurred on or about Dec. 9 in New Martinsville.

The trio is charged with feloniously conspiring amongst each other to deliver: Hydrocodone, a Schedule III controlled substance; Marijuana, a Schedule II controlled substance; Oxycodone, a Schedule II controlled substance ; Adderall, a Schedule II controlled substance ; Alprazolam, a Schedule II controlled substance; and Suboxone, a Schedule II controlled substance.

Additionally, Dawson is charged with the offense of second degree robbery for allegedly removing money forcefully from Ciara Beisel on or about Dec. 30 in New Martinsville.

Furthermore, Francis is charged with the offense of attempt to disarm a law enforcement officer for attempting to disarm Patrolman Don Larsen, acting in his official capacity as a Patrolman for the New Martinsville Police Department, by grabbing Patrolman Larsen’s weapon and attempting to pull it from its holster on or about Dec. 9 in New Martinsville.

Jonathan Edward Glendenning, 22, of 202 Abbie Drive, New Martinsville, appeared for his arraignment wherein he pleaded innocent to his one count of manufacturing marijuana. He will return on March 7 at 1:30 p.m. to continue matters. HIs bond continues. The offense is to have occurred on or about Aug. 2 in Wetzel County.

James Ronald Long, 61, of 414 Ohio Street, New Martinsville, and Roger Dean Long, 58, of P.O. Box 381, Reader, appeared before Judge Karl to continue matters in their cases. James Long, who was present with retained counsel Attorney Scott Brown, entered a plea of innocent to his one count of manufacturing marijuana. Roger Long, present with his retained counsel Attorney Thomas Dyer, waived term of court to allow time to prepare a defense regarding the same charge. James Long will return to court March 23 at 10 a.m., while Roger Long will return on Docket Day, May 10 at 10 a.m. to continue matters. Their bonds continue.

They are each charged with one count of manufacturing a controlled substance (marijuana) for allegedly manufacturing, by cultivation, the Schedule II controlled substance on or about July 21 in Wetzel County.

Lastly, Roger Lee Harper Jr., 31, of 5146 Trace Fork Road, Sandyville, W.Va., remained silent as the court entered innocent pleas on his behalf during his arraignment in circuit court on Feb. 22. The judge set a return date for March 7 at 1:30 p.m. His bond continues.

Harper has been charged with one count of third offense driving revoked for DUI for allegedly operating a motor vehicle on state Route 2 and Doolin Run Road in Wetzel County.