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Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report - 07.08.14

The Gilmer Free Press

Civil Case(s):

Plaintiff Defendant Filed Served Amount
Calhoun County Bank Dione R. Hardman 07.02.14 07.03.14 $342.50
Calhoun County Bank Tracy Jo Rexroad 07.02.14 07.02.14 $392.50



The Gilmer Free Press
Misdemeanor Case(s):

Complainant Defendant Offense Date Warrant
TFC Francis L. Taylor, WVSP Cheyenne A. Dennison Assault on Officer 07.04.14 07.04.14
Bond: $1,000.00    -  Defendant Posted 10% of Bond, $100.00 0n 07.05.14, Paper Receipt Issued by WOL and Released from Jail.
Sgt R.P. Smith Jasmine Rahchelle Roberson Speeding 07.06.14 07.07.14
Bond: $15,000.00
Sgt R.P. Smith Jasmine Rahchelle Roberson Fleeing from an Officer 07.06.14 07.07.14
Bond: $15,000.00
Sgt R.P. Smith Jasmine Rahchelle Roberson Reckless Driving 07.06.14 07.07.14
Bond: $15,000.00



The Gilmer Free Press
WV State Police Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Lisa D. Dobbins 07.03.14 No Proof of Insurance
Jeremy N. Poling 07.05.14 Speeding
Todd Mitchel Pounds 07.06.14 Motor Vehicle Inspection



Gilmer County Sheriff Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Terri Lynn Barley 07.07.14 Cell Phone
Chris N. Gabriel 07.03.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked for DUI-2nd Offense
Lorraine H. Wright 07.03.14 Burning Refuse

 

Gilmer County Grand Jury Returns 16 Indictments on 07.08.14

The Gilmer Free Press

The July, 2014 Term of Court began on Tuesday, July 08, 2014 with Judge Richard A. Facemire instructing the grand jury.


The grand jurors went to their jury room to deliberate upon their presentments at 9:42 AM and returned to the Court Room at 12:37 PM and returned 16 indictments as follows:


•  State of West Virginia vs. Steven Ray Gibson

3 count indictments, indicted for 2 counts of delivery of a controlled substance (meth) within 1000 feet of a school and 1 count of domestic battery.


•  State of West Virginia vs. William Wayne Cottrill

3 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of altering pseudoephedrine, 1 count of conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Joe Williams III

1 count indictment, indicted for conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory.


•  State of West Virginia vs. John Walton Jackson

4 count indictments, indicted for 3 counts of child concealment of a person under 16 and 1 count of sexual abuse in the third degree.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Dwight William Bullough

1 count indictment, indicted for 1 count of attempt to obtain a prescription by fraud.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Edward Gerald Cottrill II

2 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of shoplifting third offense and conspiracy to shoplift third offense.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Christina Ann Marks

2 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of shoplifting third offense and conspiracy to shoplift third offense.


•  State of West Virginia vs. James Christopher Miller

13 count indictments, indicted for 2 counts of conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 2 counts of attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of possession with intent to deliver a Schedule II controlled substance (meth), 1 count of driving suspended, 2 counts of obstructing an officer, 1 count of conspiracy to obstruct an officer, 1 count of possession of controlled substance (hydro), 1 count of altering pseudoephedrine, 1 count of possession of controlled substance (synthetic cannabis) and 1 count of possession of controlled substance (marijuana).


•  State of West Virginia vs. Brittiny Denise Miller

2 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory and 1 count of conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Clayton James McCune

4 count indictments, indicted for 2 counts of malicious wounding and 2 counts of domestic battery.


•  State of West Virginia vs. James Royce Miller

5 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of altering pseudoephedrine, 1 count of conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of possession of a controlled substance ( synthetic cannabis) and 1 count of possession of a controlled substance (marijuana).


•  State of West Virginia vs. Traci Nichole Pyles

10 count indictments, indicted for 2 counts of obstructing an officer, 1 count of permitting an unauthorized person to drive, 1 count of conspiracy to obstruct an officer, 1 count of possession of controlled substance (hydro), 1 count of conspiracy to attempt to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory, 1 count of altering pseudoephedrine, 1 count of possession of controlled substance ( marijuana) and 1 count of possession of controlled substance (synthetic cannabis).


•  State of West Virginia vs. James Randell Bailey

7 count indictments, indicted for 7 counts of delivery of a controlled substance (hydros).


•  State of West Virginia vs. John Patrick Paletta

4 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of daytime burglary, 1 count of conspiracy to commit daytime burglary, 1 count of grand larceny and 1 count of conspiracy to commit grand larceny.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Kimberly Jean Swiger

4 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of daytime burglary, 1 count of conspiracy to commit daytime burglary, 1 count of grand larceny, and 1 count of conspiracy to commit grand larceny.


•  State of West Virginia vs. James Lee Ash

6 count indictments, indicted for 1 count of persons in custody of institutions or officers (escaped home confinement), 1 count of felon in possession of firearm, 1 count of destruction of property, 1 count of assault, 1 count of possession of controlled substance (Marijuana) and 1 count of obstructing an officer.


Arraignments will be 9:00 AM Friday, July 11, 2014 when defendant need to appear with their attorneys and be prepared to post bond if they have not already been admitted to bond.

GINGER PERSINGER FOUND NOT GUILTY

The Gilmer Free Press

The trial of State of West Virginia vs. Ginger Persinger, charged with 3 counts of embezzlement began on Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 10:28 AM after the jury was sworn and seated.

Opening statements were made and the prosecutor Gerald B. Hough began to call witnesses.

Testimony was taken from 2 witnesses on Tuesday and Chief Judge Jack Alsop recessed the trial at Noon and directed the jury to return at 9:00 AM on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, June 25, 2014 Gerald Hough called 6 more witnesses before the Judge sent the jury to lunch.

At 1:15 PM the trial resumed and the state rested its case.

Judge Alsop sent the jury to their jury room while motions were heard and at 1:20 PM the defense called 1 witness and rested its case at 1:25 PM.

At 1:33 PM Judge Alsop read the charge to the jury, concluding at 1:55 PM.

Both attorneys had 20 minutes to argue their case and at 2:21 PM the jury retired to the jury room and at 2:33 PM they announced they had arrived at a verdict.

Deliberating less than 15 minutes they found the defendant NOT GUILTY ON ALL COUNTS.

Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report - 07.01.14

The Gilmer Free Press
Civil Case(s):

Plaintiff Defendant Filed Served Amount
1st Financial Bank USA    c/o Amanda Tieszen Trisha L. Cottrill  AKA  Trisha L. Metz 06.25.14 06.26.14 $1,669.41
06.26.14 Returned - Unable to Deliver



The Gilmer Free Press
Misdemeanor - Criminal Case(s):

Complainant Defendant Offense Date Warrant
Jeremy D. Jenkins George Michael Simmons Obstructing an Officer 06.17.14 06.18.14
Bond $1,500.00  - 06.18.14 B&B Bond Out * No Contact What So Ever with Christian Pierce
Jeremy D. Jenkins George Michael Simmons Accessory After The Fact 06.17.14 06.18.14
Cpl Matt Summers Michael Anthony Puffenbarger Reckless Driving 06.19.14 06.19.14
06.19.14 Plea of Guilty Entered in Exchange for Dismissal. Fine $35.00  Court Cost $160.26
Cpl Matt Summers Michael Anthony Puffenbarger Assault 06.19.14 06.19.14
06.19.14  Dismissed by Motion of State 8 Granted in Exchange for Guilty Plea to above Case
Garry W. Smarr Spencer A. Dillon Phone Calls - Harassing/Obscene/Threatening 06.25.14 06.27.14
Bond  $500.00
Francis L. Raynor, TFC Steven R. Gibson Attempt to Commit Petit Larceny 06.26.14 06.27.14
Bond  $1,000.00
Francis L. Raynor, TFC Steven R. Gibson Conspiracy 06.26.14 06.27.14
Bond  $1,000.00
Francis L. Baynor, TFC John Junior Woods IV Attempt to Commit Petit Larceny 06.26.14 06.27.14
Bond  $1,500.00
Francis L. Baynor, TFC John Junior Woods IV Conspiracy 06.26.14 06.27.14
Bond  $1,500.00
Francis L. Baynor, TFC John Junior Woods IV Obstructing an Officer 06.26.14 06.27.14
Bond  $1,500.00
Gerald B. Hough, PA Adam W. Ramsey Trespassing 2nd 06.10.14 06.27.14
06.27.14  No Contest Plea.  $100.00 Fine + $160.25 Court Cost.  Credit for Time Served. 6 Months to Pay.
Jeremy Jenkins Jacob Shreves Brandishing Deadly Weapon 06.27.14 06.27.14
Bond $2,500.00  
Jeremy Jenkins Jacob Shreves Assault 06.27.14 06.27.14
Bond $2,500.00 
K.J. Varner Russell Scott Greenlief Domestic Assault 06.29.14 06.29.14
Bond $500.00
K.J. Varner Jeffrey Mark Harper Domestic Battery 06.29.14 06.29.14
Bond  $500.00
Jeremy D. Jenkins Jacob Eli Shreves Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams 06.27.14 06.29.14
Bond  $1,250.00
Glenville Foodland Danny Minigh Worthless Check 03.15.14 06.30.14
$28.49
Glenville Foodland Michael Cain Worthless Check 05.09.14 06.30.14
$26.58
Glenville Foodland Michael Cain Worthless Check 05.09.14 06.30.14
$23.79
Kenneth J Varner, II Mark Anthony Stump Driving Suspended / Revoked for DUI 06.30.14 06.30.14
Bond  $1,500.00                          
Kenneth J Varner, II Mark Anthony Stump No Proof of Insurance  06.30.14 06.30.14
Bond  $1,500.00
Kenneth J Varner, II Mark Anthony Stump Motor Vehicle Inspection  06.30.14 06.30.14
Bond  $1,500.00
Kenneth J Varner, II Mark Anthony Stump Registration Violation 06.30.14 06.30.14
Bond  $1,500.00



The Gilmer Free Press
WV State Police Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
James Scott 06.27.14 No Proof of Insurance
Annetta Lee Snyder 06.05.14 No Proof of Insurance
Mark A. Stump 06.30.14 Driving with Suspended/Revoke for DUI
Mark Anthony Stunp 06.30.14 Motor Vehicle Inspection,  Registration Violation
Kiira P Thompkins 06.21.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams
Ceterika La. Waddell 06.27.14 Speeding
Zacary Michael White 06.18.14 No Proof of Insurance,  Motor Vehicle Inspection
Sarah Jane Yeager 06.27.14 Speeding



Gilmer County Sheriff Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Thomas Robert White 06.02.14 No Plates
Thomas Robert White 06.02.14 No Proof of Insurance
Thomas Robert White 06.18.14 Operator’s
Thomas Robert White 06.18.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams



City of Glenville Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Jacob Eli Shreves 06.27.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams


Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report - 06.25.14

The Gilmer Free Press
Civil Case(s):

Plaintiff Defendant Filed Served Amount
Clint McHenry Laken Moore 06.02.14 06.04.14 $3,090.00
John M. Brown D.J. Marks 06.05.140 06.05.14 $935.00
06.16.14: Petitioner Granted Possession of Rental Property Defendant Shall Vacate Premises by 12:00 Noon on Friday, June 20, 2014
Linda Cottrill Mandy Post Blake 06.11.14 06.12.14 $980.00
06.23.14: Respondents to Pay $780.00 and to Vacate Premises No Later Than June 30, 2014
Sally Hart James Perrine 06.12.14 06.13.14
06.20.14: Dismiss without Prejudice * Magistrate Court Does Not Have Jurisdiction
Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital - c/o Booth & McCarthy Alex Anderson Phares 06.23.14 $955.78
Sonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital - c/o Booth & McCarthy Felicia Darlene Hall 06.23.14 $388.63
Sonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital - c/o Booth & McCarthy Dwanetta Darlene Martin 06.23.14 $1,853.33



The Gilmer Free Press
Misdemeanor - Criminal Case(s):

Complainant Defendant Offense Date Warrant
M. J. Wheeler Kyra Lynn Brown Domestic Assault 06.01.14 06.01.14
Bond: $1,500.00
M. J. Wheeler Kyra Lynn Brown Obstructing an Officer 06.01.14 06.01.14
Bond: $1,500.00
Chief Benton Huffman Wesley A. Bailes Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams 05.26.14 06.02.14
Bond: $1,000.00
Joseph R. Garrett, PTTM Kimberly Rae Davis Disorderly Conduct 06.07.14 06.08.14
Bond: $10,000.00
Joseph R. Garrett, PTTM Kimberly Rae Davis Domestic Battery 06.07.14 06.08.14
Bond: $10,000.00
Joseph R. Garrett, PTTM Kimberly Rae Davis Obstructing An Officer 06.07.14 08.08.14
Bond: $10,000.00
Cason Jones Robert Thomas White No Plates 06.02.14 06.12.14
Bond: $2,500.00
Cason Jones Robert Thomas White No Proof of Insurance 06.02.14 06.12.14
Bond: $2,500.00
Cason Jones Robert Thomas White Operator's 06.02.14 06.12.14
Bond: $2,500.00
Cason Jones Robert Thomas White Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams 06.02.14 06.12.14
Bond: $2,500.00
Jeremy D. Jenkins George Michael Simmons Obstructing an Officer 06.17.14 06.18.14
Bond: $1,500.00
Jeremy D. Jenkins George Michael Simmons Accessory After The Fact 06.17.14 06.18.14
Bond: $1,500.00
CPL Matt Summers Micheal Anthony Puffenbarfer Reckless Driving 06.19.14 06.19.14
Bond: $1,000.00
CPL Matt Summers Micheal Anthony Puffenbarfer Assault 06.19.14 06.19.14
Bond: $1,000.00
Captain Jeremy D. Jenkins Adam Wayne Ramsey Burglary 06.10.14 06.10.14
Bond: $15,000.00
K.J. Varner, 11, Sr Trp. Ronald Michael Gilmore Driving Suspended/Revoked for DUI 3rd Offense 06.21.14 06.21.14
Bond: $15,000.00



The Gilmer Free Press
WV State Police Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
James Edward Ash 06.05.14 No Proof of Insurance
Harold Billingsley 06.05.14 No Proof of Insurance
Chad Drennen 06.17.14 No Proof of Insurance
Donni Marie Finley 06.10.14 No Proof of Insurance
Ronald Micheal Gilmore 06.21.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked for 3rd Offense
Patrick Wayne Gower 06.21.14 Trespassing
Rodney Harper 06.19.14 Possession of Meth, Possession Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams
Jerry Linn Hess 06.19.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI
Russell G. Hines 06.07.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI, Registration Violation
Jessica J. Hirsch 06.05.14 No Proof of Insurance
Jerry Lee Losh 06.12.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI
Ronnie Murphy 06.16.14 No Proof of Insurance, Seat Belt Violation
Tausha L. Riddle 06.23.14 Failure to Drive with Due Care, No Proof of Insurance
Annetta Lee Snyder 06.05.14 No Proof of Insurance
Brandon M. Sprouse 06.22.14 Destruction of Property
Kiira P. Thompkins 06.21.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less than 15 Grams
Eugene D. Turner 06.23.14 Seat Belt Violation
Zacary Michael White 06.18.14 No Proof of Insurance, Motor Vehicle Inspection



Gilmer County Sheriff Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Tyler Scott Bennett 06.15.14 Registration Violation
Mary A. Hosey 06.10.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI
David Tyler Parrish 06.11.14 Unlawful Killings
Robert Thomas White 06.02.14 No Plates, No Proof of Insurance
Robert Thomas White 06.02.14 Operator’s, Possession of Controlled Substance Less than 15 Grams

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 06.23.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Thursday, June 19, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop held Court in Gilmer County.


•  He heard a fugitive from justice case, wherein Nancy Aviles had to act as interpreter in the matter.

Arturo Barba Juarez was wanted by the state of NY and authorities there have until 4:00 PM Monday, June 30, 2014 to pick him up or Central Regional Jail will release him from custody.

Juarez was represented by Christina Flanigan of Buckhannon and he waived extradition back to NY.


•  Two juvenile matters were heard and one was reset for Monday, September 08, 2014 at 10:30 AM and the other being set for Friday, July 25, 2014 at 2:00 PM.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Ginger Persinger

She was in Court for pre-trial motions and her trial remains on the docket for Tuesday, June 24, 2014.

She is represented by Daniel Grindo of Gassaway.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Michael Pumphrey

He was before the Court for plea, which Judge Alsop rejected as not being in the fair administration of justice and also denied him being released on a personal recognizance bond.

Pumphrey was represented by Christopher Pritt of Charleston.



On Monday, June 23, 2014 Judge Richard A. Facemire held his regular motion day in Gilmer County.


•  One fugitive from justice, Michael Stuckey, waived extradition back to Maryland.

He was represented by Christina Flanigan of Buckhannon and Maryland authorities have until 4:00 PM Wednesday, July 02, 2014 to pick him up or he will be released from Central Regional Jail.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Judy Gillespie

She was before the Court for sentencing after entering a plea in January to manufacturing a Schedule I controlled substance.

Judge Facemire sentenced her to 1-5 in the penitentiary but suspended the sentence and placed her on 5 years’ probation with the usual and customary court costs but no fine.

She also must pay $11.00 per month as a probation and community correction fee beginning Tuesday, August 05, 2014.

She was also represented by Christina Flanigan.


•  Five juvenile matters were heard and reset as follows:

Monday, September 22, 2014 at 9:00 AM, 9:05 AM, 9:10 AM, 9:15 AM and 9:20 AM


•  Two names changes were granted.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Jeremy Harris

He was before the Court once again for sentencing after having been returned by Anthony Correctional Center to the Central Regional Jail.

Judge Facemire sentenced him to 1-10 in the penitentiary with credit for time served.

Harris was represented by Clinton Bischoff of Summersville.


Judge Facemire will return to Gilmer County to open the July term of Court on Tuesday, July 08, 2014 at which time Grand Jury will be held and other matters will be heard.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 06.18.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Wednesday, June 18, 2014 Family Court Judge Larry Whited granted one divorce in Gilmer County:


•  Brian Pennebaker (40) of Troy, WV divorced Jane Pennebaker (40) of Strasburg, PA.

Federal Grand Jury Returns Indictments Involving Area Residents

The Gilmer Free Press

A Federal grand jury in Elkins returned involving area residents.

Roberto SOTO, age 51; Gregory PARDO, age 58; Antonio MARTINEZ-PORTA, age 38; and Ahmed JOHNSON, age 42, inmates at the Federal Correctional Institution at Gilmer, were named in a two-count Indictment charging them with conspiracy to commit assault with a dangerous weapon and assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to do bodily harm.

Each face up to 5 years in prison.

The case will be prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandon S. Flower and was investigated by the Special Investigative Services Unit at FCI Gilmer.


Clarence THOMPSON, age 35, of Clarksburg, West Virginia, was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

THOMPSON, who has prior convictions for delivery of a controlled substance, uttering and burglary, is prohibited from possessing a firearm.

THOMPSON faces up to 10 years in prison.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The GARRETT and THOMPSON cases will be prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn A. Morgan.


An indictment is merely an accusation each defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 06.13.14

The Gilmer Free Press

•  On Thursday, June 12, 2014 Judge Richard A. Facemire heard 2 juvenile matters in Gilmer County and reset them for Tuesday, July 08, 2014 at 10:00 AM.



On Friday, June 13, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop appeared in Gilmer County to conduct 2 civil bench trials and hold a conference call.


•  Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital vs. Joshua Singleton

This case had a default judgment order entered in the matter after Singleton failed to appear for his bench trial.


•  Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital vs. Matthew Smith

This case had judgment entered against him in his case after he and plaintiff could not reach agreement on a payment plan.


•  After hearing a conference call in the case of DC Petroleum vs. Christopher Haymond et al

Judge Alsop discovered that one of the defendants have not yet been served, so no scheduling order could be entered in the matter.

He reset the matter for status hearing on Monday, September 08, 2014 at 10:15 AM.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 06.11.14

The Gilmer Free Press

Family Court Judge Larry Whited heard several cases in Glenville t on Wednesday, June 11, 2014.

He continued 3 cases, set one case for a status conference, entered a final order in a modification proceeding, dismissed 3 cases, and granted 1 divorce as follows:


•  Ricky Radcliff (56) of Coxs Mills, WV divorced Helen F. Radcliff (61) of Linn, WV .


•  He also united David Brown and   Teresa Bell   in marriage.

Area Individuals Sentenced in Federal Court

The Gilmer Free Press

Eight individuals appeared before Chief Judge John Preston Bailey for sentencing, according to United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II.


Ricky Lee TOWNSEND, age 53, of Cox’s Mills, West Virginia, was sentenced to 100 months in prison and three years of supervised release for possession of materials used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

The Court ordered that TOWNSEND’s sentence run concurrent with the Gilmer County state sentence he is currently serving on drug-related charges; therefore, TOWNSEND was remanded to state custody.

This case was investigated by the West Virginia State Police.


Ronald SNYDER, age 39, of Buckhannon, West Virginia, was sentenced to 24 months in prison and five years of supervised release for failure to update his sex offender registration.

The Court ordered that SNYDER’s sentence be served consecutively with the state sentence he is currently serving for the delivery of marijuana, and therefore SNYDER was remanded to state custody.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Morgan and investigated by the United States Marshals Service and the West Virginia State Police.

Lewis County: Guilty Plea Entered in Murder of Infant

The Gilmer Free Press

A Harrison County man accused in Lewis County of murdering an infant has entered a plea.

Christopher Sheppard plead guilty in court Thursday morning and a sentencing hearing has been set for Thursday, August 14, 2014.

A jury selection was supposed to start Monday, but instead Sheppard told the court he wanted to enter a guilty plea.

Originally, the baby was thought to have fallen out of a sink while Sheppard was watching the 14-month-old a few years ago, the baby then hit his head and later passed away.

However, the State Medical Examiner’s Office says an autopsy showed the baby’s death was caused by physical assault.

Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report - 06.06.14

The Gilmer Free Press
Misdemeanor - Criminal Case(s):

Complainant Defendant Offense Date Warrant
Benton Huffman Terri L. Wimer Animal Cruelty 05.01.14 05.01.14
$500.00 Bond, 05.20.14 Plea of No Contest Entered. Fine $300.00. Court Cost $160.25 Restitution to Court for Upshur Veterinary Hospital $583.75
Benton Huffman Jovan Eugene Dyson

Animal Cruelty

05.01.14 05.01.14
Jeremy D. Jenkins Dasean A. Cheadle Battery 05.07.14 05.08.14
Bond: $3,500.00, Bond Reduced to 10% Cash, $350.00 Collected 05.09.14, Released from Jail
Glenville Sunoco Derek R. Minney Bad Check 05.08.14
$81.79
Glenville Sunoco Derek R. Minney Bad Check 05.08.14
$66.45
Glenville Sunoco D. Tyler Parrish Bad Check 05.08.14 05.14.14
$79.43, 05.14.14 Plea of Guilty Entered. Fine $10.00 Bank Service Charge $20.00 WCP $59.43 CC $160.25 * Total $249.68, 6 Months Payment Schedule
Cpl Matt Summers Curtis Nicholson Speeding 05.08.14 05.08.14
Cpl Matt Summers Curtis Nicholson No Insurance 05.08.14 05.08.14
TFC Fancis Baynor Rodney Palmer McCord Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI 2nd Offense 05.09.14
Bond $5,000.00, 05.21.14 Plea of Guilty, $150.00 Fine + $160.25 Court Cost, 6 Month Payment Schedule, 30 Days Jail with Credit for Time Served
TFC Fancis Baynor Rodney Palmer McCord Possession Controlled Substance <15 Grams 05.08.14 05.09.14
Bond $5,000.00, 05.21.14 Plea of Guilty, $150.00 Fine + $160.25 Court Cost, 6 Month Payment Schedule, 30 Days Jail with Credit for Time Served
Benton Huffman Rodney Palmer McCord Driving Suspended MIS 8th Off 05.13.14 05.13.14
Bond $2,500.00, 05.21.14 Dismissed in Exchange for Guilty Plea to other Charges
Benton Huffman Rodney Palmer McCord Driving Suspended MIS 8th Off 05.13.14 05.13.14
Bond $2,500.00, 05.21.14 Dismissed in Exchange for Guilty Plea to other Charges
TPR. George H. Jones Michael Casteel Possession of Controlled Substance 05.19.14 05.20.14
Bond $,000.00
TPR. George H. Jones Michael Casteel Possession of Controlled Substance < 15 Grams
Bond $500.00
Jeremy D. Jenkins Rodney Palmer McCord Possession of Controlled Substance < 15 Grams 02.19.14 05.21.14
Bond $1,000.00, 05.21.14 Dismissed in Exchange for Guilty Plea to other Charges
R J Garrett Rodney Palmer McCord Possession of Controlled Substance < 15 Grams 05.02.14 05.21.14
Bond $1,000.00, 05.21.14 Plea of Guilty $25.00 Fine + $160.25 CC - 6 Month Payment Schedule - 30 Days Jail, Credit for Time Served.
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Kassie Melton Obstructing an officer 05.22.14 05.29.14
Bond $1,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Amber Bonhan Obstructing an officer 05.22.14 05.29.14
Bond $1,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Yumus Clinton Roberson III Battery 05.22.14 05.27.14
Bond $1,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Yumus Clinton Roberson III Assault 05.22.14 05.27.14
Bond $1,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Mary A. Hosey Assault 05.22.14 05.23.14
Bond $5,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Mary A. Hosey Battery 05.22.14 05.23.14
Bond $5,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Mary A. Hosey Obstructing an officer 05.22.14 05.23.14
Bond $5,000.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Jeffery Alan Mihelich Assault 05.11.14 05.27.14
Bond $1,500.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Jeffery Alan Mihelich Battery 05.22.14 05.27.14
Bond $1,500.00
PTLM Joey R. Garrett Jeffery Alan Mihelich Destruction of Property 05.22.14 05.27.14
Bond $1,500.00
Benton Huffman Ralph Alexander Calhoun Leaving the Scene 05.16.14 05.21.14
Bond $1,000,00
Benton Huffman Ralph Alexander Calhoun Failure to Report 05.16.14 05.21.14
Bond $1,000,00
Cason Jones Ralph Alexander Calhoun Possession < 15 Grams Cannabinoids 05.16.14 05.21.14
Bond $1,000,00
Jeremy D. Jenkins Spencer Alexander Dillon Battery 05.27.14 05.28.14
Bond $1,000,00
SGT M R Yost Brandi Diane Wilhelm Possession of Controlled Substance < 15 Grams 05.28.14 05.28.14
Bond $1,000,00
Deputy Mike Wheeler Kira Lynn Brown Destruction of Property 05.31.14 06.01.14
Bond $1,500,00
Deputy Mike Wheeler Kira Lynn Brown Domestic Assault 06.01.14 06.01.14
Bond $1,500,00
Deputy Mike Wheeler Kira Lynn Brown Obstructing An Officer 06.01.14 06.01.14
Bond $1,500,00
Benton Huffman Wesley A. Bailes Possession of Controlled Substance < 15 Grams 05.26.14 06.02.14
Bond $1,000,00



The Gilmer Free Press
WV State Police Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Joshua M. Williams 05.19.14 Seal Belt Violation



Gilmer County Sheriff Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Aaron Chad Wright 05.21.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI
Christopher Yono 05.22.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less than 15 Grams



City of Glenville Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Joshua P. Winfield 05.29.14 Driving Suspended / Revoked Non-DUI - 2nd Offense - No Proof of Insurance

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 06.09.14

The Gilmer Free Press

•  On Tuesday, June 03, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop heard and dismissed a juvenile matter in Gilmer County.



•  On Wednesday, June 04, 2014 he upheld the magistrate appeal filed by Harlin Campbell and ordered he pay the magistrate costs and $100.00 fine and also the Circuit Court costs upon his earlier conviction of domestic battery.

Campbell was represented by David Karickhoff of Sutton and the bench trial was completed by 9:35 AM.



On Thursday, June 05, 2014:

•  State of West Wirginia vs. Mose Chadwell

He was before the Court for entry of a plea.

Chadwell was represented by Bryan Hinkie of Buckhannon and entered a plea of guilty to count 2 of the indictment charging him with obtaining services under false pretenses.

The remaining counts of the indictment were dismissed and the probation officer must do a presentence investigation.

Sentencing will be Monday, August 11, 2014 at 9:20 AM.


•  One juvenile matter was heard and reset for 1:00 PM, Thursday, July 03, 2014.


•  On Friday, June 06, 2014 Chief Judge Alsop heard one juvenile matter in Gilmer County and reset it for Monday, August 11, 2014 at 9:30 AM.



On Monday, June 09, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop held 14 juvenile hearings in Gilmer County and reset them as follows:

•  Monday, September 08, 2014 at 9:00, 9:10, 9:20, 9:25, 9:30, 9:40, 9:45 and 10:00 AM.

•  Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM.

•  Monday, August 11, 2014 at 9:40, 9:45 AM.

•  Dismissed one juvenile case and denied a motion in a final juvenile matter.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 06.04.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Wednesday, June 04, 2014 Family Court Judge Whited heard several matters in Glenville.


•  Temporary orders were entered in 2 cases and a guardian ad litem filed a response in another case.


•  Two other cases were on the docket with no orders entered yet in them.

WEST VIRGINIA SUPREME COURT OF APPEALS AFFIRMS $14 MILLION JUDGMENT AGAINST CASHCALL

The Gilmer Free Press

Morrisey: This case has been very important to a number of West Virginia
consumers who patiently waited for it to work through the appellate process.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey today announced that the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals recently affirmed a $13.8 million judgment against California-based lender CashCall Inc. and upheld the awarding of more than $440,000 in attorneys’ fees and costs to the Attorney General’s Office.

The ruling by the Supreme Court came more than a year after CashCall and its President/CEO J. Paul Reddam appealed three orders entered by the Kanawha County Circuit Court that found the company engaged in abusive debt collection, violated state lending laws and had to reimburse the state for attorneys’ fees. The May 30 memorandum opinion by the Court said CashCall violated debt collection laws in the state, that it was a true lender in a “rent-a-bank” scheme and that the civil penalties levied upon the company were appropriate.

“This case has been very important to hundreds of West Virginia consumers who patiently waited for it to work through the appellate process,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “This ruling by the Supreme Court confirms that the debt collection activity was unlawful, the loans were unlawful, and the Circuit Court appropriately canceled the loans and imposed stiff civil penalties for CashCall’s conduct.”

According to court documents, CashCall sold predatory loans in West Virginia with interest rates of up to 99 percent APR, which is a violation of the state’s usury laws.  When consumers defaulted, CashCall used abusive and harassing collection techniques.

“CashCall used the ‘rent-a-bank’ model to attempt to skirt West Virginia’s consumer protection laws,” Morrisey said. “The trial court found, and the Supreme Court affirmed, that usurious interest rates will not be tolerated in West Virginia, regardless of how cleverly the lenders arrange their business to make it look legitimate.”

The Office of Attorney General alleged that CashCall partnered with a bank to make it appear as though the bank was the lender, when, in fact, CashCall marketed and sold loans, as well as provided funding and collected on those loans.  The Office alleged CashCall “rented” the bank’s name and charter to avoid certain state regulations.

In the original complaint, CashCall was accused of soliciting consumers to take out high interest loans from a state-chartered bank in South Dakota.  When consumers could not repay the loans, CashCall engaged in various unlawful debt collection activities, including placing numerous calls to consumers, employers, and other third parties.

Any persons wishing to file a complaint about a consumer matter or to alert the Attorney General about unfair or deceptive practices may do so by calling the Consumer Protection Hot Line, 1.800.368.8808, or by obtaining a complaint form from the consumer web page at www.wvago.gov.

The decision can be found on the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals website, www.courtswv.gov/supreme-court/opinions.html. It is case number 12-1274.

Veteran Charged with Falsely Claiming More Than $480,000 in Benefits

The Gilmer Free Press

A Bridgeport, WV, man has been charged with falsifying documents in order to enhance his Veteran’s Administration (VA) disability benefits, as well as fraudulently obtaining controlled substances from the VA.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II announced that Thomas Cueto, age 65, was indicted on one count of theft of government funds and nine counts of obtaining controlled substances by fraud.

Cueto, who served in the U.S. Army from 1969, to 1972, including time spent in Vietnam, was awarded disability benefits in 1999 for service-connected post-traumatic stress disorder.  Since 1999, Cueto has collected more than $480,000 in VA benefits.

The Indictment returned today alleges Cueto falsely claimed on his Report of Discharge from the Armed Forces of the United States (also known as a “DD-214”) to have earned the following awards: a Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star with V-Device, Purple Heart and Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. It’s also alleged that Cueto submitted a counterfeit Purple Heart certificate and other misleading documents to show he was injured in combat.

Cueto is also alleged to have misled VA medical personnel in order to obtain Methadone HCL and Hydrocodone, both of which are Schedule II controlled substances.  He was allegedly receiving narcotics from private medical providers, but advised VA medical personnel he had not previously received the drugs from any other source.  The Indictment alleges Cueto was fraudulently obtaining the narcotics between 2010 and 2012.

The case will be prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Brandon S. Flower and Andrew R. Cogar.

Cueto faces up to 10 years in prison on the theft of Government funds charge and up to 4 years on each of the controlled substance violations. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is seeking a money judgment against Cueto in the amount of $480,000.

Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant. The charges contained in the Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

G-Comm™: Hoppy’s Commentary - Innocence Project Loses WV Case

image

The Innocence Project, a nationwide campaign to represent people who may have been falsely convicted, has lost the first round in its fight to free Joseph Anthony Buffey.  The Clarksburg man is serving 70 years in prison after pleading guilty to the 2001 rape and robbery of the 83-year-old mother of a Clarksburg police officer.

Harrison County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Bedell, who presided over Buffey’s original case, rejected the arguments on behalf of Buffey, concluding that, among other things, Buffey has “buyer’s remorse” over his guilty plea.

Buffey was a 19-year-old high school dropout and petty criminal at the time of the crime.  Innocence Project attorney Al Karlin says Buffey confessed to the attack after an eight-hour interrogation, but later retracted his statement.

The crime was particularly heinous. The elderly woman, who lived alone, was robbed then raped several times.

The Innocence Project’s primary argument now, however, is that recent DNA testing shows Buffey was not the attacker.  Instead the fluids left behind belong to another man, Adam Bowers, who is currently incarcerated for an unrelated offense. Bowers is now awaiting trial for the 2001 crime.

Harrison County Assistant Prosecutor David Romano argues that, while the DNA identifies Bowers as the attacker, it does not necessarily exonerate Buffey.  Prosecutors say DNA testing shows there was more than one man at the scene, an argument the defense refutes.

Judge Bedell gave the case a thorough review–three full days of testimony and over 10,000 pages of documents—before reaching his decision.  The judge pointed out that Buffey could have gone to trial or waited for results of an earlier DNA test, but instead he accepted a plea agreement and admitted his guilt.

Romano agrees.  “If he had wanted to stand trial, he had the opportunity.”

But Karlin says it’s not that simple.  “There is real evidence that innocent people plead guilty much more often than people would like to believe, often out of fear that if they go ahead with the trial even worse things will happen to them.  That’s what happened in this case.”

The case isn’t over.  Karlin says the Innocence Project will appeal to the state Supreme Court.  As for Buffey, Karlin says “He’s fighting to retain his optimism.”

But as Judge Bedell’s review demonstrated, courts are naturally suspicious when a defendant changes his story and are reluctant to set aside a guilty plea, even when there is new evidence.

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 05.28.14

The Gilmer Free Press

There were no cases heard in Circuit Court the week of May 19, 2014 due to the Judges attending a judicial conference.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014 was Judge Richard A. Facemire’s regular monthly motion day and he handled several cases.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Jeremy Harris

He was represented by Clinton Bischoff of Summersville.

He was before the Court for further sentencing after being returned from Anthony Center to the Central Regional Jail.

After hearing, the representations of Harris that he wanted auto or welding vocational courses there and was denied.

Judge Facemire ordered him returned to Anthony Center (for Youthful Offenders) for 6 months to 2 years and directed they provide him with the vocational opportunities in the field he was interested in.

He must pay court costs, but no fine, within 18 months of his release.


Three juveniles were heard and reset as follows:

•  Monday, June 23, 2014 at 9:40 AM

•  Monday, August 25, 2014 at 9:00 AM

•  Monday, June 23, 2014 at 9:50 AM


•  State of West Virginia vs. Tiffany Mayo

She was represented by Daniel Grindo of Gassaway.

She was before the Court asking for her bound over cases to be dismissed, and Judge Facemire dismissed them without prejudice and upon entry of the order she will be released from bond and home confinement in Lewis County.


•  One infant guardianship and 2 adoptions were granted.


•  Heather Patterson was before the Court for early release of a structured settlement and the Court granted the same.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Virginia Richards Sears

She was before the Court, with her attorney, Christina Flanigan of Buckhannon for violating her probation.

After admitting part of the petition filed against her, she asked for probation and/or home confinement to be granted to her, which motion Judge Facemire denied stating he felt she was in need of correctional treatment.

He then sentenced her to 1-5 in the penitentiary and ordered she pay court costs within 18 months of her release and restitution at a rate of $100.00 per month by the 5th day of the month after she is released.

She was not assessed any fines.



On Wednesday, May 28, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop held Court in Glenville.


•  A juvenile matter was heard and reset for Monday, June 09, 2014 at 11:20 AM.


•  State of West Virginia vs. John Edgar Phillips

He was represented by David Karickhoff of Sutton, failed to appear for a revocation of probation hearing and after Deputy Sheriff John Moss called his name 3 times in open Court.

Judge Alsop directed the Clerk to issue a bench warrant for Phillips and for him to be placed in CRF with no bond set.


Five criminal cases were set for pre-trial hearings and were resolved as follows:


•  State of West Virginia vs. David C. Wise

He pled guilty to count 2 of the indictment handed down against him previously, charging failure to provide change in information regarding registering as a sex offender.

Count 1 was dismissed by the state and a presentence will be conducted by the probation officer and he will be sentenced at 1:30 PM on Friday, July 25, 2014.

Wise was represented by Christina Flanigan.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Isaac Charles Grounds

He was represented by Kevin Hughart of Sissonville

He pled guilty to grand larceny and will be sentenced at 9:30 AM on Monday, July 14, 2014.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Van Ross Ramsey Sr.

He was before the Court represented by Daniel Grindo.

After hearing several motions Judge Alsop granted a continuance of his trial until next term.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Ginger Persinger

She was represented by Daniel Grindo.

She had her pre-trial reset for Thursday, June 19, 2014 due to unavailability of a witness and her trial is now set for Tuesday, June 24, 2014.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Mose Allen Chadwell

He was before the Court and his attorney Bryan Hinkle.

He appeared by ‘phone and related to the Court that his client had been offered a plea deal and would likely accept it.

Judge Alsop then set the matter for Thursday, June 05, 2014 at 9:00 AM for entry of a plea.


•  Two juvenile matters were heard and reset for Tuesday, June 03, 2014 at 9:00 AM and Monday, August 11, 2014 at 9:10 AM.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 05.28.14

The Gilmer Free Press

Several matters were heard in Family Court in Gilmer County on Wednesday, May 28, 2014 with all of them being continued and 1 being dismissed.

Barbour County: 22 indicted by Grand Jury

The Gilmer Free Press

The Barbour County has returned indictments against 22 persons in the May 2014 term.

The following list was provided by Barbour County Prosecuting Attorney Leckta L. Poling.

Arraignments will be held at 9:00 AM on June 10, 2014.

1. Travis Lee Adams, of Philippi, was indicted on operating or attempting to operate a clandestine drug lab, possession of substances to be used as a precursor to make meth, exposure of a child to meth manufacturing, and conspiracy charges.

2. James Scott Alexander, of Moatsville, was indicted on a malicious wounding charge.

3. Shelia Eillein Arbogast, of Beverly, was indicted on four counts of forgery and four counts of uttering.

4. Matthew Lewis Ball, of Clarksburg, was indicted on breaking and entering, petit larceny, grand larceny, destruction of property, and conspiracy charges.

5. Vincent Gregory Baisi, of Belington, was indicted on breaking and entering, conspiracy, and attempted burglary charges.

6. Robert Edward Bulakto, of Philippi, was indicted on a third degree sexual assault charge.

7. David Scott Croston, of Clarksburg, was indicted on operating or attempting to operate a meth lab, possession of substance to be used as precursor to make meth, exposure of a child to making meth, and conspiracy charges.

8.Mitchell Allen Duckworth, of Philippi, was indicted on burglary, conspiracy, and petit larceny charges.

9. Charles Darrel George, of Belington, was indicted to failing to register as a sex offender.

10. Andrew Llewelyn Johnson, III, of Philippi was indicted on aider and abettor to breaking and entering, burglary, conspiracy, destruction of property, and petit larceny charges.

11. Gary Michael Marsh, of Philippi, was indicted on a third offense DUI charge.

12. Christa Lynn Marshall, of Philippi, was indicted on an embezzlement charge.

13. Monie Jo Mayle, of Canton, Ohio, was indicted on destruction of property and conspiracy charges.

14. Ronald Christopher Posten, of Belington, was indicted on three counts of third degree sexual assault charges.

15. Charles Anthony Schillinger, of Canton, Ohio, was indicted on two counts of destruction of property and conspiracy charges.

16. Kelly Jo Skidmore, of Junior, was indicted on possession of a controlled substance by fraud and conspiracy charges.

17. Michelle Renee Skidmore, of Belington, was indicted on possession of a controlled substance by fraud and conspiracy charges.

18. Janel Marie Sturm, of Baden, Pennsylvania, was indicted on driving under the influence of a controlled substance or drugs causing death and child neglect resulting in death charges.

19. Donald Lynn Sullivan, of Volga, was indicted on possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and driving under the influence charges.

20. Russel John Tingler, of Philippi, was indicted on possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and possession of a controlled substance charges.

21. James Christopher Wellman, of Clarksburg, in breaking and entering, petit larceny, grand larceny, destruction of property, and conspiracy charges.

22. Brianna Morgan Witek, of Belington, was indicted on possession of a controlled substance by fraud and conspiracy charges.

Gilmer County Magistrate Court Report - 05.27.14

The Gilmer Free Press
Civil Case(s):

Plaintiff Defendant Filed Served Amount
Drakes Auto Sales Inc. Kelsey Parker 04.29.14 05.05.14 $1,484.57
Stephanie & Michael T. Hess Denzil Hess 05.05.14 05.21.14 $1,071.34

Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital
c/o Booth & McCarthy

Devon Nicole Heater 05.09.14 $705.89

Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital
c/o Booth & McCarthy

Shanda Jane Bailey 05.09.14 05.12.19 $1,917.38

05.12.14 Defendant Confessed Judgment - * Will make payments

Ashley Hickman Rodney P. McCord 05.21.14

Order of Possession and Removal. To leave premises no later than 20 days after hearing date of 05.21.14

United Hospital Center
c/o Edward L. Harman

Lesley M. Holloway 05.21.14 05.23.14 $2,460.70



The Gilmer Free Press
Misdemeanor - Criminal Case(s):

Complainant Defendant Offense Date Warrant
Cason S. Jones John Paletta Burglary
Conspiracy to Commit Burglary
Grand Larceny
Conspiracy to commit Grand Larceny
05.07.14 05.09.14
$20,000.00 Bond - Burglary - 05.20.14: Waiver of time period for preliminary. Hearing-Bond reduced to $75,000.00 cash or surety.
Cason S. Jones Kimberly Swiger

Burglary
Conspiracy to Commit Burglary
Grand Larceny

05.07.14
TFC Francis Baynor, WVSP John Michael Puffenbarger

Sexual Assault
Sexual Abuse by Guardian
Incest
Sexual Assault 1st Degree

05.09.14
$500,000.00 - Motion to reduce bond denied. 8 probable cause found * Bound over to Gilmer County Circuit Court



The Gilmer Free Press
WV State Police Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Christopher Bailey 05.02.14 No Proof of Insurance
Nicole Lynn Blackman 05.21.14 Speeding
Tony Blosser 05.14.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked, Non-DUI 2nd Offense
Chelsie D. Buckner 05.19.14 Registration Violation
Connie S. Butcher 05.09.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams
Possession of Prescription without Prescription
William Alfred Carr 05.22.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
No Proof of Insurance
Brent Edward Evick 05.19.14 Seat Belt Violation
Theresa Marie Hale 05.22.14 Seat Belt Violation
Douglas Ray Hardman 05.22.14 Seat Belt Violation
Melissa M. Johnson 05.20.14 No Proof of Insurance
Brian Anthony Kennedy 05.20.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Brian M. Linkous 05.21.14 Speeding
Rodney P. McCord 05.08.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams
Joshua D. McCullough 05.19.14 Seat Belt Violation
Saleena H. Montalvo 05.19.14 Seat Belt Violation
Curtis J. Nicholson 05.08.14 Speeding
No Insurance
Kimberly Nunemaker 05.19.14 Seat Belt Violation
Kenneth Richard Peth 05.01.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Joshua K. Singleton 05.07.14 No Proof of Insurance
Thomas Carlton Ullum 05.21.14 No Proof of Insurance
Dane Whipkey 05.20.14 No Interlock
Cassandra Williams 05.16.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI



Gilmer County Sheriff Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Ralph Alexander Calhoun 05.16.14 Possession Less Than 15 mg Cannabinoids
Donald Eugene Carter 05.12.14 Burning Litter/Refuse
Mandatory Disposal - No Receipts
Valeri M. Sprouse 05.07.14 Failure to Maintain Control
Aaron Chad Wright 05.21.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Christopher Yoho 05.22.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams



City of Glenville Citation(s):
Defendant Issued Charge(s)
Samantha Joyce Boling 05.14.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Ralph Alexander Calhoun 05.16.14 Leaving the Scene
Failure to Report
Rodney P. McCord 05.02.14 Possession of Controlled Substance Less Than 15 Grams
Rodney P. McCord 05.12.14 Driving Suspended/Revoked Non-DUI
Jamie Singleton 05.02.14 Leaving the Scene
David Lee Smith 05.01.14 No Proof of Insurance
Possession of Synthetic Cannabinoids



The Gilmer Free Press
Department of Natural Resources Citation(s):

Defendant Issued Charge(s)
David M. Montgomery 05.02.14 Open Dump
Deposit Offensive Substance Near Waters
Nathan D. Montgomery 05.02.14 Open Dump
Proof of Mandatory Disposal

GFP - 05.29.2014
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PSC Orders MonPower and Potomac Edison to Read Meters Each Month

The Gilmer Free Press

The Public Service Commission of West Virginia today issued a Final Order in the General Investigation into the meter reading, billing and customer service practices of the FirstEnergy subsidiaries Monongahela Power Company (Mon Power) and Potomac Edison Company (PE) that, among other things, directs the companies to implement monthly meter reading and billing as quickly as possible, but no later than July 01, 2015.

The companies are also being required to maintain adequate staff to perform monthly readings, including rovers and to backfill absences; and to continue to submit monthly statistical metrics to the Commission through December 31, 2015.

The Commission initiated the General Investigation in June 2013, after receiving numerous customer complaints relating to the frequency and methods used to read meters and estimate customer bills.

At that time the Commission stressed that the purpose of the general investigation was to focus on the practices, policies and procedures in place at MonPower and PE and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses at a structural level.

The Commission held a series of public comment hearings, including two in the territory of each operating company, and an evidentiary hearing in Charleston.

MonPower and PE serve approximately 520,000 customers in thirty-seven West Virginia counties.

More information may be obtained from the PSC website: www.psc.state.wv.us  and referencing Case No. 13-0830-E-GI

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 05.16.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Monday, May 12, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop heard several matters in Gilmer County.


•  Two fugitives from justice waived extradition to their respective states.

Both defendants were represented by Dennis Willett of Buckhannon.

William Clay waived to return to the state of Kentucky with Ricardo Shead waiving to return to the state of Ohio.

Authorities in those states have until 4:00 PM Wednesday, May 21, 2014 to pick up the individuals or Central Regional Jail will release them.


A couple sentencing were handed down in Gilmer County on this date:

•  Lucas Buckhannon (represented by Jonathan Fittro) was sentenced to 1-5 in the penitentiary with credit for time served.


•  Rodney Singleton was sentenced to 1-5 in the penitentiary upon his conviction by jury of domestic battery 3rd offense to run consecutive with the sentence he is currently in prison serving.

He also received 1 year in Central Regional Jail upon his conviction of battery by the jury.

The 1 year will be served concurrently with the 1-5 sentence he received on this date.

Singleton was represented by Jerome Novobiski of Clay.


Eight juvenile matters were heard and some were reset as follows:

•  One Monday, August 11, 2014 at 9:00 AM

•  Another one for Monday, August 11, 2014 at 10:30 AM

•  One for Monday, July 14, 2014 at 9:10 AM

•  One for Monday, June 09, 2014 at 11:00 AM

•  One for Monday, June 09, 2014 at 11:10 AM

•  One for Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 8:30 AM


•  State of West Virginia vs. Stacey Bright

She was before the Court with her attorney, Daniel Grindo of Gassaway, and the Court denied transferring home confinement to another county and executed her previous sentence of 1-10 in the penitentiary.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Gerald Adkins II

He was before the Court for a probation revocation, and admitted the allegations in the revocation petition filed against him by the probation officer.

After taking testimony Judge Alsop sentenced him to 15 consecutive weeks in Central Regional Jail.

Said sentence to be served from 6:00 PM on Fridays through 6:00 PM on Tuesdays.

He was also represented by Daniel Grindo who also represented Van Ramsey Sr. and several motions were heard in his criminal case.


•  Chief Judge Jack Alsop sentenced Robert Hacker on May 16, 2014 in Gilmer County.

Hacker had been convicted by a jury earlier this term and was represented by Steve Nanners and Bryan Hinkle, both of Buckhannon, although Hinkle did not appear on this date for sentencing in the matter.

After hearing 6 defense motions, Judge Alsop denied all 6 motions as well as a letter from Hacker’s brother submitted in the matter and sentenced him to not less than 382 nor more than 785 years to be served consecutively in the penitentiary and 6 months and 72 hours to be served in the Central Regional Jail, said sentence to be served concurrently with the aforesaid sentence and also not less than 175 nor more than 370 years in the penitentiary also to be served concurrent with the first sentences handed down.

He was also directed to register as a sex offender for life if he ever gets out of the penitentiary.


•  A probation revocation hearing involving John Edgar Phillips was reset for Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 9:00 AM due to a death in the family of Phillips, who is represented by David Karickhoff of Sutton.


•  Two juvenile matters were heard and one was reset for Monday, July 14, 2014 at 9:20 AM and a third matter was reset for Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 9:00 AM without being heard on this date.

U. S. Attorney Honors Deputy U. S. Marshal

A Deputy U. S. Marshal was recognized for his significant investigative efforts leading to the apprehension of a federal fugitive.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, recognized Deputy U. S. Marshal Wesley Fred Frederick at the U.S. Attorney’s Award ceremony held in Wheeling.

DUSM Frederick was honored for going above and beyond the call of duty in locating a defendant who fled the Clarksburg area on the eve of his trial for involvement in a large-scale “bath salts” and synthetic marijuana distribution conspiracy.

The Gilmer Free Press


After eight months of reviewing records, interviewing and re-interviewing persons with information, the defendant was apprehended at a remote cabin in New Mexico.  Thanks to the outstanding efforts of DUSM Frederick, the defendant is now in federal custody pending trial.

“My congratulations go out to Deputy Marshal Wesley “Fred” Frederick in being recognized by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of West Virginia for his contributions to law enforcement and his relentless pursuit of fugitives,” stated U. S. Marshal Gary M. Gaskins.  “DUSM Frederick was honored for his tenacity and determination in hunting down a fugitive after eight months on the run.  It was DUSM Frederick’s many hours of hard work and never giving up that located this individual in holding true in the Marshals Service motto, that you can run but can’t hide.  I am extremely proud of DUSM Frederick for his performance and dedication during this fugitive investigation.“

The ceremony included remarks from U.S. District Court Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr. and the presence of many local, state and federal law enforcement leaders from throughout
West Virginia. 

North Carolina Couple Blames Flatwoods KOA for Injuries

The Gilmer Free Press

A Mt. Airy, North Carolina, couple is suing The Flatwoods Kampgrounds of America after they claim it breached its duty by allowing dangerous conditions to exist.

KOAsignOn July 29, 2012, Laurie Legere was a guest and business invitee of the defendant and was in the bathhouse on the premises for the purpose of using the shower to bathe, according to a complaint filed March 24 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia.

Legere claims when she exited the shower stall and attempted to walk across the bathhouse to the area where her towel was located, she slipped and fell on the wet floor and suffered a fracture through the head of her proximal left radius, an avulsion fracture projecting anteriorly into the left elbow joint, a dislocation of her left elbow and other injuries.

John Skidmore Development Inc., which trades and does business as The Flatwoods Kampgrounds of America, had a duty to design, construct, maintain and/or operate a bathhouse in a manner that would not result on an injury to invitees, according to the suit.

Legere claims the defendant breached its duty and was negligent, which caused her to suffer injuries.

As a direct and proximate result of the defendant’s negligence, Legere was required to undergo medical treatment and incurred medical bills in excess of $37,000, according to the suit.

Legere claims the defendant breached its duty by installing, or permitting to exist, floor tiling it knew or should have known was reasonably unsafe for use; by creating or allowing to exist circumstances which required the defendant’s guests to traverse the wet tile floor to retrieve a towel; and by failing to install appropriate floor mats to protect the defendant’s guests.

The defendant also breached its duty by creating or allowing to exist an unmarked step down when in the exercise of reasonable care, the defendant knew or should have known that the step down posed a slip and fall hazard for guests, according to the suit.

Legere claims the defendant failed to warn guests of the existence of the unmarked step down and failed to equip the bathhouse shower and common areas with appropriate protections for guests.

Jan Legere, Laurie Legere’s husband, has lost the society, companionship, services and consortium of his wife, according to the suit.

The Legeres are seeking compensatory damages with pre- and post-judgment interest.

They are being represented by Robert J. Behling of the Pittsburgh law firm of Dapper, Baldasare, Benson, Behling & Kane PC.

The case has been assigned to District Judge Irene Patricia Murphy Keeley.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia case number: 1:14-cv-00053

~~  Kyla Asbury - WV Record ~~

Area Individuals Sentenced for Federal Supervised Release Violations

The Gilmer Free Press


•  Larry Donald SANDY, age 46, of Rosedale, West Virginia, was sentenced to 4 months in prison for possession and use of a controlled substance.

SANDY was originally sentenced on August 08, 2012, to 12 months and 1 day in prison and four years of supervised release for manufacturing marijuana.

SANDY, who is on bond, will self-report to the designated Federal institution.


•  Tobias L. BENNETT, age 40, of Buckhannon, West Virginia, was sentenced to 12 months and 1 day in prison for failure to answer truthfully all inquiries of the probation officer, failure to notify probation officer of change in residence or employment, failure to participate in drug and alcohol treatment, possession of controlled substances, excessive use of alcohol and frequenting places where controlled substances are illegal used.

BENNETT was originally sentenced on December 22, 2009, to 46 months in prison and three years of supervised release for conspiracy to possession equipment and chemicals to manufacture methamphetamine.

BENNETT was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.

Former Fairmont State University Official Sentenced to Prison

The Gilmer Free Press


A former vice-president at Fairmont State University has been sentenced to federal prison for stealing over $1.3 million dollars from the university.

David A. TAMM, age 45, of Parkersburg, West Virginia, was sentenced to 46 months in prison as a result of his convictions for “Embezzlement from State Agency Receiving Federal Funds” and “Making and Subscribing a False Tax Return for Tax Year 2012.“

TAMM, a former vice-president at Fairmont State University, was convicted of stealing funds from the school through the use of state-issued purchasing cards.

TAMM admitted that from October of 2007 until January of 2013, he embezzled and stole funds from Fairmont State, including funds from federal education grants.

TAMM, who served as Chief Information Officer at the school, also admitted to filing a false tax return for the 2012 tax year by reporting substantially less income than he had actually received.

The Court ordered TAMM to make restitution in the amount of $1,324,191.04 to Fairmont State University and $224,759 to the IRS for back takes.

The Court also imposed a money judgment in the amount of $639,174.33.

TAMM, who is on bond, will self-report to prison next month.

The investigation revealed that TAMM purchased hundreds of computer switches with purchasing cards and then resold them for cash.

The cash was then used by TAMM to purchase luxury automobiles, a $435,000 home in Bridgeport, West Virginia, and other expensive items.

TAMM also used a purchasing card to acquire high-end electronics for his personal use.


If anyone has information regarding public corruption in their community they are encouraged to call the West Virginia Public Corruption Hotline at 1.855.WVA-FEDS (1.855.982.3337), or to send an email to .

FBI Agents Honored at U.S. Attorney Awards

Three agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation were recognized for their outstanding work in investigations involving two former West Virginia sheriffs and a woman who embezzled over a million dollars from a race track.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, recognized three FBI agents at the U.S. Attorney’s Award ceremony held in Wheeling.  FBI Special Agent Dave Rauser was honored for his work in exposing the civil rights violations committed by former Jefferson County (WV) Sheriff Bobby Shirley that led to Shirley’s resignation, conviction, and prison sentence.

FBI Special Agent Frederick Aldridge was honored for his investigation of former Barbour County Sherriff John Hawkins, who resigned and recently pleaded guilty to charges related to the filing of a false insurance claim.  Hawkins is free on bond pending a sentencing hearing.

The Gilmer Free Press


FBI Special Agent Lawrence Quigley was recognized for his work in exposing the crimes of Anita Ambler, the former bookkeeper at the Mountaineer Racetrack who was convicted by a federal jury trial last year on 11 counts of mail fraud, 10 counts of wire fraud, and four counts of transacting in criminal proceeds.  The evidence at trial showed that Ambler was involved in the theft of over $1.3 million from an account that was being maintained by Mountaineer Race Track and Casino on behalf of the Horsemen’s Association.  Ambler presently is serving an 87 month prison sentence.


Other recipients of awards include:

- Retired DEA Special Agent Robert L. Manchas, U.S. Attorney Award for Distinguished Service;

- Greater Harrison County (WV) Drug Task Force, U.S. Attorney Award for the investigation of “Hot Stuff, Cool Things”, a synthetic drug retailer from Clarksburg;

- Hancock-Brooke-Weirton Drug Task Force, a U.S. Attorney Award for its investigation of a drug trafficking organization from Chicago;

- West Virginia State Police Sgt. Matthew S. Adams, U.S. Attorney Award for investigation of Michael John Jones, who was convicted of “Sexual Exploitation of a Child”, sentenced to 25 years in federal prison, and is now facing charges in state court in Brooke County for similar conduct;

- ATF Special Agent Ken Grace, U.S. Attorney Award for the investigation of the thefts of firearms from the Stonewood, West Virginia police department; and

- IRS-CI Agent Jeff James, IRS Agent Danielle McWatters, & HHS Agent Mary Ann Withrow, U.S. Attorney Awards for their inquiry into Dr. Allen Saoud, who was convicted at trial for scheming to circumvent Medicare and Medicaid, bankruptcy fraud, lying to a federal agent, aggravated identify theft, and obstruction of internal revenue laws by filing false income tax returns.


The ceremony included remarks from U.S. District Court Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr. and the presence of many local, state and federal law enforcement leaders from throughout West Virginia.

GFP - 05.15.2014
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Prosecutor Says There Are Legal Ways to Maintain Classroom Control

The Gilmer Free Press

There are proper, legal ways to discipline a kindergarten student but slapping them in the head is not one of them according to a Fayette County assistant prosecutor.

Brian Parsons prosecuted the battery case against Fayetteville Elementary teacher Kathleen Wade late last week.

Wade was convicted Friday on two counts of battery.

Parsons said Wade slapped a kindergarten student in the head at the Fayette County library and then boxed the ears of another student in her classroom.

“When you are striking a child above the neck, when you are striking a child in the head–that’s indefensible. That’s not necessary to maintain discipline or order or to correct the child,” Parsons said.

The prosecution had eyewitnesses to both situations.

“They were disinterested persons, which I thought made the evidence more reliable than maybe say a parent or somebody who was closer to the situation,” Parsons said.

Wade, who has been on suspension for the last year in the Fayette County school system, faces up to two years in jail and a $1,000 fine when she’s sentenced June 12.

Parsons said he’ll speak with the parents of the children before deciding what to recommend to the magistrate at sentencing.

Wade has been teaching for 27 years and Parsons said he believes she knew what she did was wrong.

“The incident that occurred at the library she did not have any knowledge of it, but the incident that occurred in the classroom she felt that she had made a bad choice. She indicated she wished she could have a ‘do over’ on that, which I thought was tantamount to admission,” Parsons said.

~~ WVMN ~~

Seven Central West Virginia Men Indicted on Federal Drug Charges

The Gilmer Free Press

Seven Central West Virginia men have been indicted on federal drug charges alleging a conspiracy to distribute prescription painkillers, as well as other related drug charges.

United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, announced that Jason MARPLE, age 35, of Clarksburg, West Virginia; Casey SEARCY, age 33, of Salem, West Virginia; Christopher Michael WALLS, age 29, of Clarksburg; Chad Alton REGISTER, age 31, of Anmoore, West Virginia; Russell POWERS, also known as Rusty, age 49, of Clarksburg; George POWERS, age 34, of Clarksburg; and Dedreayl MADDOX, also known as “D,” age 29, of Fairmont, West Virginia, were named in a fifteen count superseding indictment charging them with “Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute and to Distribute Oxycodone.”  The superseding indictment also alleges additional counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone,” “Distribution of Oxycodone within 1,000 Feet of a Playground,” “Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime,” and “Maintaining Drug-Involved Premises.”

SEARCY is charged with two counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone within 1,000 Feet of a Playground,” which doubles the penalty; three counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone;” one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Oxycodone;” and one count of “Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premise.”

MARPLE is charged with two counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone within 1,000 Feet of a Playground,” which doubles the penalty; two counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone;” and one count of “Knowingly Using a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime.”

REGISTER is charged with one three counts of “Distribution of Oxycodone,” and one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Oxycodone.”

Russell POWERS and George POWERS are each charged with “Possession with Intent to Distribute Oxycodone,” and one count of “Maintaining a Drug-Involved Premise.”

WALLS is charged with one count of “Distribution of Oxycodone.”

The Superseding Indictment also carries a forfeiture allegation wherein the United States seeks to forfeit $1,886 in United States Currency; a 2003 Harley Davidson Heritage Softtail motorcycle; firearms; and tools that were seized from the defendants and derived from proceeds obtained directly from the offenses alleged in the Superseding Indictment.

The conspiracy, distribution, possession, and drug-involved premises counts carry a penalty of up to twenty years imprisonment; the distribution counts within 1,000 feet of a playground carry a penalty of up to forty years imprisonment; and the firearm charge carries a minimum penalty of five years imprisonment.

The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shawn A. Morgan, and was investigated by the Greater Harrison County Drug & Violent Crime Task Force.  A Superseding Indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

G-Comm™: Hoppy’s Commentary - The Judge Wilfong Affair

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Randolph County Circuit Court Judge Jaymie Wilfong made a terrible mistake, and she admits it.

The first-term judge had a two-year affair between 2011 and 2013 with Travis Carter, while Carter served as Director of the North Central Community Corrections (NCCC).  That agency worked with the judge to decide which defendants should be candidates for alternative sentencing.

Both Wilfong and Carter were married, and they carried on their affair quietly, although at least one local attorney contends there was “wide-ranging community knowledge of the relationship.”

The relationship included sexual liaisons between the two in Judge Wilfong’s courthouse office and at the home of an assistant prosecuting attorney.  Wilfong also sent sexually explicit emails, texts, instant messages and nude pictures of herself to Carter.

The affair raises serious conflict of interest concerns.  The Judicial Investigation Commission report says Carter and/or his subordinate staff from NCCC appeared before Judge Wilfong in approximately 46 criminal matters where the judge had to decide whether defendants had violated the terms of their placement in the community corrections program.

There is also evidence that Wilfong continued the relationship with Carter even after state Supreme Court Administrator Steve Canterbury raised concerns about the ethical implications.  Wilfong contends in her response to the report that the sex stopped after Canterbury’s warning.

Before we sew the scarlet “A” on Wilfong’s robe, it’s important to note a couple of points.

To her credit, the Judge self-reported the affair and the possible conflicts of interest last year to the Judicial Investigation Commission.  In her response to the Commission, Wilfong said, “I take full and complete responsibility” for the affair.

It was a consensual affair. The judge did not use the power of her position to force herself on a subordinate.

Wilfong has been, by all accounts, a hard-working judge who has been active in the community. She has overseen the implementation of adult and juvenile drug courts and broken down barriers to the judiciary by visiting every school in the county.

The judge also admits that “the judicial process and its integrity have been negatively impacted.”  However she adds that she never let the affair interfere with her work.

Wilfong is a sympathetic figure.  She’s human, she made a mistake, and now she’s owning it.  The problem, however, is that Wilfong is a judge, the only one in the 20th circuit covering Randolph County.

Wilfong was elected in 2008 because, among other things, the voters trusted in her judgment, and now she has exhibited what can only be described as extremely poor judgment.  How can those who come before Judge Wilfong now have confidence in her sagacity?

The state’s Code of Judicial Conduct says that a judge must “uphold the integrity and independence of the judiciary” and “avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety.”  Sadly, Wilfong has failed to do so.

The matter is now pending before the Judicial Hearing Board.  It will decide what penalty, if any, to recommend to the state Supreme Court.  They range from a mild rebuke to the suspension of her law license.

In the meantime, she has a duty to do the right thing for the people of Randolph County.  Resign and avoid any more embarrassment and to protect the integrity of the judiciary.

Former Lewis County Teacher Pleads Guilty to Sex Charge

The Gilmer Free Press

A former Lewis County High School band director pleaded guilty to sex-related charges and was sentenced to five years probation.

Floyd Friend, Jr., 40, cut a plea deal with prosecutors and admitted to a charge of filming minors in sexually explicit material.

Circuit Judge Kurt Hall went along with the plea agreement and suspended a 10-year prison term and sentenced Friend to probation.

Friend will have to register as a sex offender, complete therapy and perform community service.

He was originally arrested last July after police found 422 images, many of them sexually explicit pictures, on his cell phone.

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 04.28.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Monday, April 28, 2014 Judge Richard A. Facemire heard several cases on his regular monthly motion day in Gilmer County.


•  Three fugitives from justice cases were before him, all 3 being represented by Christina Flanigan of Buckhannon.

Anthony Ward of NY, Derrick Alvarez of PA and Alberto Castanon of NJ all waived extradition and will be returned to officials of their respective states.

Authorities In their states have until 4:00 PM on Wednesday, May 07, 2014 to pick the inmates up at Central Regional Jail (CRJ) or they will be released from custody.


•  Eleven juvenile matters were heard with some being reset for further hearing on the following dates and times: Wednesday, July 09, 2014 at 10:10, 10:30, two at 10:40, 10:50, and 11:00 AM; Tuesday, May 27, 2014 at 9:00 and 9:15 AM; and also on Monday, June 23, 2014 at 9:30 AM.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Jeremy Harris

He was before the court with his attorney, Clinton Bischoff of Summersville, asking for reconsideration of his former sentence.

However,  after Judge Facemire discovered he had been returned from Anthony Correctional Center (a facility for youthful offenders) without completing their program he denied Harris’ request and set it for further sentencing on Tuesday, May 27, 2014 at 9:00 AM.


•  On a good note, Jeremy Knicely was before the Court after having successfully completed the program at Anthony Center, whereupon Judge Facemire sentenced him to 1-3 years in the penitentiary, but suspended the sentence and placed him on 3 years’ probation.

Bischoff also represented Knicely, who must become gainfully employed, have an alcohol monitor system hooked up on his vehicle for 1 year and pay court costs.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Stephanie Smarr

She was to appear for revocation of her probation.

However, she allegedly signed herself into Amity Center on this date rather than appear for the hearing.

Judge Facemire directed the Clerk issue a bench warrant for Smarr.

Two Plead Guilty to Trout Fishing Law Violations

The Gilmer Free Press

Two residents of Marion County were charged with and have pleaded guilty to violations of the state’s trout fishing laws. A months-long investigation by officers of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources Law Enforcement Section resulted March 19, 2014, in the discovery of 321 trout at the residence of Michael Earl Fetty, age 70, and Tammy K. Fetty, age 46 of Margaret Road, Wallace, WV.

The investigation determined that the Fettys would, on nearly a daily basis, fish Curtisville Lake and Huey Run Lake, both located in Marion County, where they would catch and keep varying amounts of trout.

The Fettys would transport their catch back to their residence where they would clean and wrap the trout and then place them in a freezer.

Seventy-five trout from the winter/spring of 2012 were discovered along with 90 trout from the winter/spring of 2013 and 156 trout from 2014, including 12 trout the Fettys had in their possession when approached by a Natural Resources Police Officer at Curtisville Lake March 19, 2014.

Both Fettys were issued citations (summons) for Exceeding Possession Limit of Trout and Conspiracy to violate Chapter 20 of the West Virginia State Code (wildlife law) for a total of two charges each.

On April 02, 2014, the Fettys appeared in the Harrison County Magistrate Court and entered guilty pleas to all charges. For each individual the presiding magistrate charged $160.25 in court costs on each citation for a total of $320.50; a fine of $20 on each citation for a total of $40; and $300 in replacement costs. In summary, the total amount imposed in court costs, fines and replacement fees was $660.50 for each of the Fettys.

Fishermen are reminded that the daily Creel Limit for trout (total number of trout that can be caught and kept per day) is six and the possession limit for trout (total number of trout that can be possessed by one individual) is 12.

Questions regarding fishing regulations should be directed to your local West Virginia Division of Natural Resources office.

Ex-Head of WV Schools’ Federal Suit Dismissed

The Gilmer Free Press

A federal lawsuit filed by West Virginia’s former state school superintendent has been dismissed at her attorneys’ request.

A U.S. District Court judge on Thursday approved the request by lawyers for Jorea Marple to dismiss the lawsuit because of a similar lawsuit filed earlier this month in Kanawha County Circuit Court.

Marple was fired in November 2012.

The lawsuit claims that she was unlawfully fired and that members of the Board of Education secretly plotted to oust her and broke open-meeting laws.

The Charleston Gazette reports that Marple singles out former board president Wade Linger as a co-defendant in the lawsuit.

The lawsuit seeks relief including for the loss of reputation among her peers, loss of ability to get another job of equal stature, and mental anguish.

A Young Weston Man Is Headed to Prison for More Than Half a Decade for a Federal Drug Crime

The Gilmer Free Press

Chief U.S. District Judge John Preston Bailey sentenced Robert Vaughn Barnette II, age 28, to 5 1/4 years in federal prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release.

Barnette was sentenced for possession of pseudoephedrine to be used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

West Virginia State Police and the Lewis County Sheriff’s Department investigated, according to the office of U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld II.

Law enforcement raided Barnette’s home on February 25, 2013, Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandon Flower previously told the court.

Officers found plastic soda bottles, tubes, lithium batteries, drain cleaner and canning jars, all items that are used to make meth, Flower had told the court.

Barnette told officers he made meth in his bedroom, Flower had told the court.

The sides stipulated that Barnette used the volatile and dangerous shake-and-bake method to make meth.

Barnette bought pseudoephedrine on 14 different occasions within four months, including once on February 24, 2013, at the Rite-Aid in Clarksburg, Flower previously told the court.

Barnette was represented by the office of Federal Defender Brian Kornbrath in the hearing, which was held in Elkins.

National Program Coming to GSC to Benefit Local Youth

The Gilmer Free Press

A student internship at Glenville State College brings a national program to a local elementary school. GSC is partnering with non-profit organization Vision Shared to bring the Lemonade Day project to Glenville Elementary School. 

“Lemonade Day is a fun, exciting way to teach kids about entrepreneurship using something as simple as a lemonade stand. Our local elementary students that are involved have been very creative and innovative in planning their lemonade and stands,“ said GSC Associate Professor of Vocational Business Cinda Echard.

Lemonade Day is a non-profit national event that educates youth in elementary and middle school about entrepreneurial skills. Lemonade Day is backed by the West Virginia Department of Education. 2012 GSC graduate Matthew Thompson, CNP of St. Albans (Kanawha County), West Virginia works for Vision Shared and is the Lemonade Day Program Director.

“Lemonade Day is the premiere program for teaching youth entrepreneurship available today. Students that participate learn valuable life lessons including goal setting, creating a budget, and leadership. These kids are truly the entrepreneurs of tomorrow! Being an alum of GSC, I’m honored to be working along with their business department students to reach the children of Gilmer County. Lemonade Day is a culmination of the lessons I learned as a Business Administration - Marketing major with a Nonprofit Management minor,“ said Thompson.

The project is a series of fourteen different lessons that educate children about basic skills and knowledge needed to start, operate, and maintain a business of their own. The lessons range from accounting and marketing to making healthy lemonade and building a stand. Each class is responsible for obtaining supplies needed to build their own stands.

GSC senior marketing and sport management major Megan Burkhammer of Cox’s Mills (Gilmer County), West Virginia is using the event to obtain credit for her marketing internship. The college’s Lemonade Day advisors are Echard and GSC Career Services Counselor Joanna DiStefano. Being the main contact for Glenville’s Lemonade Day, Burkhammer has arranged every detail such as preparing for and holding meetings, recruiting GSC students to volunteer, and planning the Lemonade Day event.

“It’s been a rewarding experience to be able to watch the children learn, be creative, and incorporate the lessons they have learned from Lemonade Day into their regular school lessons. Each class has a unique stand and theme, and I cannot wait to see how all of them come together and turn out on Lemonade Day,“ said Burkhammer.

“I am looking forward to being able to actually sell the lemonade and learn how to make our own version of lemonade on Lemonade Day. This has been a fun experience,“ said Glenville Elementary School 6th grade student Jaycie Johnson. 

GSC’s Lemonade Day will be held on Tuesday, April 29, 2014 at Glenville Elementary School from 1:15 PM until 3:00 PM. Two fourth grade classes along with all fifth and sixth graders will create one lemonade stand for each class.

GSC student volunteers and Lemonade Day advisors spent four weeks in Glenville Elementary teaching lessons from the workbook provided by the Lemonade Day organization. Each participant receives a lemon yellow draw-string backpack with their workbook of lessons.

Burkhammer obtained ten event sponsorships from local businesses including: Waco Oil & Gas, Gil-Co Faith Pharmacy, Smith Land Surveying, Shelly DeMarino Attorney at Law, State Farm Insurance Agent Dan Smith, Frame’s Oil Field Services, McDonalds, United Bank, Ratliff and Ratliff Insurance, and the Glenville Pathfinder/Democrat newspaper. Each class made a pitch to a loan board in order to receive this money and purchase needed supplies such as lemons, sugar, or stand materials.

Echard concluded, “I invite everyone to come see these entrepreneurs at work and refresh yourself with some lemonade on April 29, 2014 at Glenville Elementary.“

For more information about the Lemonade Day project contact Echard at or 304.462.6257, or DiStefano at or 304.462.6151, or Thompson at or 304.757.4840.

Clay County Woman Says State Wrongly Put Her on Child Abuse Registry

The Gilmer Free Press

The WV Record Reports:

A Clay County woman is suing West Virginia Child Protective Services and employees after she discovered her name on the child abuser registry list.

DHHRMelissa Cook filed a lawsuit March 20 in Kanawha Circuit Court against West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Bureau for Children and Families Protective Services, also known as Child Protective Services, Douglas Robinson, Toby Lester and Tammy Bailey, citing intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, punitive damages, constitutional violation of due process and deprivation.

Cook claims she was in a relationship with an ex-boyfriend who acted erratically due to a head trauma and failure to take correct medication to control seizures. The suit alleges they would frequently quarrel and the defendant intervened in their relationship.

In April 2000, the ex was assessed to be a dangerous risk to Cook and his child, as well as Cook’s other children, and was not allowed to be left alone with them.

According to the brief, Cook followed all plans requested by the defendants, but she found out in February 2012 she was wrongfully placed on a child abuser registry list, resulting in her job being terminated. She says she’s suffered damages as a result.

Cook is seeking damages, immediate removal of Cook from child abuser registry list, attorney fees, interest and court costs.

She is being represented in the case by Charleston attorney Todd W. Reed. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Charles E. King.

Kanawha Circuit Court Case No. 14-C-567

~~  Ben Hart - WV Record ~~

Notice to Citizens of Gilmer and Surrounding Counties

The Gilmer Free Press

The Gilmer County Circuit Clerk Karen Elkin will be in her office all day on Friday, April 18, 2014.

The back door at the top of the fire escape will be open (weather permitting) or use the buzzer and she will grant you entrance.

Gilmer County Magistrate Court will also be open on Good Friday.

This is per directive received from Chief Judge Alsop.

Gilmer County Circuit Court Report – 04.14.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Wednesday, April 09, 2014, Judge Richard A. Facemire heard 2 cases in the morning hours.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Justin Handshoe

A fugitive from Kentucky, waived extradition and authorities in that state have until 4 PM Friday, April 18, 2014 to pick him up or Central Regional Jail will release him from custody.

Handshoe was represented by Christina Flanigan of Buckhannon.


•  Judge also heard was a juvenile matter which was reset for Monday, June 23, 2014 at 9:20 AM.



In the afternoon of April 09, 2014 Chief Judge Jack Alsop heard several matters in Gilmer County.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Kelland Sherrod

A fugitive from Ohio, waived extradition and authorities there have until 4 PM Friday, April 18, 2014 to pick him up or Central Regional Jail will release him from custody.

Sherrod was represented by David Karickhoff of Sutton.


•  Three juvenile matters were heard and reset as follows:

Monday, June 09, 2014 at 10:10 AM, one at 10:20 AM and the third for Friday, May 16, 2014 at 1 PM.




Chief Judge Jack Alsop presided over his motion day on Monday, April 14, 2014 in Gilmer County.


•  Six juvenile matters were heard and reset:

One for Monday, June 09, 2014 at 10:30 AM, one for 10:40 AM, one for Monday, May 12, 2014 at 10:00 AM, one for Monday, July 14, 2014 at 9:00 AM, one for Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 1:45 PM and one was previously scheduled for another date.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Harlin Campbell

A magistrate appeal was set for a bench trial for Wednesday, June 04, 2014 at 9:00 AM.

David Karickhoff of Sutton represents Campbell.


•  In the civil matter between Julie Conrad vs. Gilmer County Senior Citizen’s

After hearing a motion to dismiss by defense counsel, Jan Fox, the Court felt the complaint was not sufficient on its face and ordered plaintiff to file an amended complaint within 20 days and took the motion to dismiss under advisement.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Ricky Townsend

He was before the Court for sentencing and Judge Alsop opted to double his sentence for a second drug conviction and ordered Townsend to be sentenced to 4-20 years in the penitentiary.

Townsend was represented by Bryan Hinkle of Buckhannon.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Robert Hacker

He was before the Court for sentencing, as was Rodney Singleton, but both defendants sentencings were reset for Monday, May 12, 2014.

Hacker’s at 1 PM and Singleton’s at 10:10 AM.

Hacker is represented by co-counsel Steve Manners and Bryan Hinkle, both of Buckhannon.

Singleton is represented by Jerome Novobilski of Clay.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Daniel Rose

He was before the Court asking for mental evaluation, which motion was granted by the Court.

Hinkle also represented Rose.


•  State of West Virginia vs. Derrick Stalnaker

He was before the Court, represented by Valentina Wheeler of Charleston, asking for his case to be dismissed.

Judge Alsop denied her motion but did permit him to be released on bond and house arrest.

Later that afternoon bond was posted and he will be hooked up on house arrest in Lewis County on Tuesday and he was released from Central Regional Jail.

Judge Enforces Settlement Agreement in Mylan Patent Case

The Gilmer Free Press

Mylan Inc. (Nasdaq: MYL) has confirmed that a federal district court has granted its request to enforce a settlement agreement between Endo Pharmaceuticals and Mylan settling patent litigation in connection with Mylan’s filing of an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Frovatriptan Succinate Tablets, 2.5 mg.

This product is the generic version of FROVA®, which is used to treat acute migraine headaches in adults.

As a result of the decision, the Court has vacated its January 28, 2014, decision in favor of Endo regarding the parties’ patent litigation over this product, which could have prevented Mylan from launching its generic version of FROVA until after the expiration of U.S. Patent 5,464,864 patent on November 07, 2015. By enforcing the settlement, Mylan can launch its product pursuant to the terms of the settlement, contingent upon final FDA approval.

For the 12 months ending December 31, 2013, Frovatriptan had U.S. sales of approximately $66.41 million, according to IMS Health.

Currently, Mylan has 187 ANDAs pending FDA approval representing $94.9 billion in annual brand sales, according to IMS Health. Forty-two of these pending ANDAs are potential first-to-file opportunities, representing $25.4 billion in annual brand sales, for the 12 months ending December 31, 2013, according to IMS Health.

This press release includes statements that constitute “forward-looking statements,“ including with regard to the settlement of litigation and sales of products. These statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Because such statements inherently involve risks and uncertainties, actual future results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to: any legal or regulatory challenges to the settlement; strategies by competitors or other third parties to delay or prevent product introductions; risks inherent in legal and regulatory processes; and the other risks detailed in the company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company undertakes no obligation to update these statements for revisions or changes after the date of this release.

Mylan is a global pharmaceutical company committed to setting new standards in health care. Working together around the world to provide 7 billion people access to high quality medicine, we innovate to satisfy unmet needs; make reliability and service excellence a habit; do what’s right, not what’s easy; and impact the future through passionate global leadership. We offer a growing portfolio of more than 1,300 generic pharmaceuticals and several brand medications. In addition, we offer a wide range of antiretroviral therapies, upon which approximately 40% of HIV/AIDS patients in developing countries depend. We also operate one of the largest active pharmaceutical ingredient manufacturers and currently market products in approximately 140 countries and territories. Our workforce of more than 20,000 people is dedicated to improving the customer experience and increasing pharmaceutical access to consumers around the world. But don’t take our word for it.

Three Area Individuals Sentenced for Federal Supervised Release Violations

The Gilmer Free Press

•  James DEAN, age 57, of Clarksburg, West Virginia, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for unlawful possession and use of cocaine and excessive use of alcohol.

DEAN was originally sentenced on August 21, 2006, to 155 months in prison and four years of supervised release for possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine.

In March of 2009, DEAN’s sentence was reduced to 125 months in prison pursuant to the crack resentencing guidelines and in October of 2011, DEAN’s sentence was again reduced to 88 months pursuant to the crack resentencing guidelines.

DEAN was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.


•  Chasty ANDERSON, age 24, of Clarksburg, WV was sentenced to 8 months in prison and 28 months of supervised release for commission of the new crime of DWI and possession and use of hydrocodone and oxycodone.

ANDERSON was originally sentenced on October 07, 2011, to 12 months and 1 day in prison and three years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute heroin and possession of a stolen firearm.

ANDERSON was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.


•  John William PICKENS of Braxton County, West Virginia, was sentenced to 8 months in prison for unlawful possession and use of marijuana and commission of the new offense in state court of marijuana possession.

PICKENS was originally sentenced on November 02, 2007, to 55 months in prison and three years of supervised release for felon in possession of a firearm.

PICKENS was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 04.02.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Wednesday, April 02, 2014 Family Court Judge Larry Whited heard several cases in Gilmer County.


•  Three cases will have orders drafted by the Child Advocate Bureau so no disposition is available on them at this time.


•  Temporary orders were entered in 2 cases, one contempt petition was dismissed for failure to appear.


•  One marriage was performed between Adeana Cottrill and Curtis Carr.


•  Earlier one divorce was received in the mail, granted by Family Court Judge wherein Lorrie McCune (44) of Glenville, WV divorced Benny McCune (43) of Glenville. WV.

APPROXIMATELY $1.2 MILLION SETTLEMENT IN AUTO TITLE LENDERS CASE

The Gilmer Free Press

Fast Auto Loans, Virginia Auto Loans have agreed to erase any debt currently owed by
West Virginia residents, pay $450,000, and end objectionable debt collection practices in the state.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey today announced that the Office of the Attorney General reached an approximately $1.2 million settlement in Jefferson County Circuit Court with Fast Auto Loans Inc. and Virginia Auto Loans Inc.

As part of the settlement, the two title loan companies agreed to close all accounts and zero-balance any debt owed by West Virginia-based consumers within 60 days. In addition, the loan companies agreed to return any vehicles that were seized from West Virginia consumers that have not yet been sold and remove any and all liens on vehicle titles.

The companies agreed to cancel approximately $816,000 in consumer debt and to pay $450,000 to the state, of which approximately $150,000 will be used as consumer restitution. The remaining money will be able to be used by the Office of the Attorney General for consumer protection activities, be held for appropriation by the Legislature, or be returned to the taxpayers and/or consumers.

“Our Office is pleased with this settlement in that it will help many hundreds of West Virginia consumers in the Eastern Panhandle, as well as the southern region of the state,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “While title loans are not legal in West Virginia, some citizens opt to go across state lines to obtain them. However, consumers should be cautious about getting these loans, no matter how cash-strapped they may be, because of the high interest rates and the very real danger of losing their cars.”

A title loan is a high-interest, short-term loan or cash advance secured by the title to the consumer’s vehicle. If the consumer defaults on the loan, the lender may seize the vehicle. The loans often carried annual percentage rates of anywhere from 120% to 300%.

The State sued Fast Auto Loans and Virginia Auto Loans in 2012 alleging the companies engaged in conduct that violated the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act. The suit alleged, among other things, that the companies abused and harassed consumers by calling them at home and/or work, and disclosed, without any legal justification, the consumers’ debts to people listed as references. The suit also alleged that consumers were coerced into relinquishing possession of their vehicles by false threats of arrest and criminal prosecution. Fast Auto Loans and Virginia Auto Loans seized about 218 cars from West Virginia residents, according to records the companies provided to the Attorney General’s Office.

In the settlement, the companies did not admit to any wrongdoing and denied they engaged in the alleged conduct.

“While consumers should always try to pay what they owe, collectors also must abide by the law and treat citizens with respect,” Morrisey said. “Lenders cannot harass or threaten people in order to recoup money that is owed. We will always stand strong to protect West Virginians from collection abuse.”

The Attorney General’s Office will receive a report within the next 60 days from Fast Auto Loans and Virginia Auto Loans showing how much consumer debt was canceled as a result of this settlement, how many vehicles were returned, and how many title liens were removed from vehicles.

The settlement is contained in an Agreed Final Order approved by Judge David Sanders of the Circuit Court of Jefferson County. The case number is 12-C-231.

Federal Court Report - 04.07.14

The Gilmer Free Press

Before Judge Keeley, Michael John Luther GRIFFIN, age 34, of Clarksburg, West Virginia, was sentenced to 30 months in prison and three years of supervised release for “Distribution of Heroin.”  GRIFFIN’s sentence was increased by the Court due to violations of his pretrial release.  GRIFFIN was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation to a Federal institution.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn A. Morgan and investigated by the Greater Harrison County Drug and Violent Crime Task Force.


Jovan MANNING, age 36 and formerly an inmate at FCI Gilmer, entered pleas of guilty and was sentenced to 18 months in prison, to run consecutive to his current 228-month sentence, for “Conspiracy to Commit Bribery of a Public Official” and “Bribery of a Public Official.”  MANNING admitted to conspiring with a correctional officer at FCI Gilmer and another inmate to smuggle tobacco into the prison on multiple occasions.  The correctional officer provided the tobacco to MANNING and the other inmate in exchange for having contacts on the outside of the prison send money totaling approximately $40,000.  MANNING received money from other inmates when he sold the tobacco in the prison.  This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Inspector General.


MICHAEL J. WHITE, age 45, of Clarksburg, West Virginia, was sentenced to 5 years probation and ordered to make restitution in the amount of $23,795 to the Veterans Administration Medical Center for “Stealing Public Money.” This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert H. McWilliams, Jr. and investigated by the Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General, Criminal Investigations Division.


DONNA IRONS, age 37, of Clarksburg, West Virginia, entered a plea of guilty to “Distribution of Marijuana.”  IRONS, who is free on bond pending sentencing, faces up to 5 years in prison.  This case was investigated by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew R. Cogar and investigated by the Greater Harrison County Drug and Violent Crime Task Force.


MARLENA MAE LONG, age 49, of Sutton, West Virginia, entered a plea of guilty to “Theft of Mail by a Postal Employee.” LONG, who is free on bond pending sentencing, faces up to 5 years in prison.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael D. Stein and investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service.

Weston: Sharpe Hospital Employee Wins the Case against Him

The Gilmer Free Press

Barring a reversal upon appeal the courts, Ronald Lee Morris of Weston will be returning to work at William R. Sharpe, Jr. Hospital.

Last week West Virginia Administrative Law Judge William B. McGinley ruled in favor of Morris at a level three grievance hearing and ordered his reinstatement as an employee at Sharpe Hospital with back pay and restoration of benefits.

Morris, an employee of the hospital’ with 19 years of service, was terminated by the hospital on January 08, 2013 for allegedly threatening to bring a gun to work and to shoot other employees.

He was also arrested and charged with making terroristic threats, but was acquitted by a Lewis County jury of that charge.

On January 01, 2013, Morris was accused of making the threats by two other Sharpe employees.

In making his ruling, McGinley wrote that the termination of Morris was, “based upon the allegations that two employees made that Morris threatened to bring a gun to work and kill people. Since their testimony is not credible, Sharpe Hospital and the DHHR failed to prove that Morris made that threat.”

In the synopsis of his findings, Judge McGinley indicated that the testimony of the two accusers was often inconsistent, contradictory and was not credible.

At the grievance hearing it was the responsibility of Sharpe Hospital and the DHHR to establish the charges against Morris by a preponderance of evidence. McGinley ruled that they failed to do so.

Other employees in the room, when the alleged threat was made also testified that they did not hear Morris make such a threat. It was Morris’ contention all along that what he said was misconstrued. He had a grievance against the hospital pending, and claimed that what he said was, “I’ve got a level three hearing coming up and I can’t wait for the big guns to come up from Charleston and clean house.‘’ He said that he was referring to the need for management at Sharpe Hospital to be replaced.

This is not the first time Sharpe Hospital has been ordered to reinstate Morris. The hospital fired Morris in April of 2010 for alleged patient, abuse.

In December of 2010, Administrative Law Judge Ronald L. Reece ordered that Morris be reinstated to his job for much the same reasoning offered by McGinley.

Sharpe Hospital and the DHHR, he wrote, failed to prove by a preponderance of evidence that any physical abuse occurred. Once again hospital administrators relied on the testimony of one employee who Morris and other argued was not even in the position to see if any abuse occurred. Other witnesses said they saw no abuse. In the 2010 case, Morris acknowledged that he may have used a loud tone of voice but denied that any physical abuse took place. Reece did uphold a ten day suspension of Morris without pay for verbal abuse.

Morris has maintained that the hospital administration has been out to get him since winning the grievance he filed back in 2010, at times accusing hospital supervisors of harassment.

~~  Weston Democrat - April 02, 2014 ~~

Calhoun Board and State School Board Sued for Removing Spring Break

The Gilmer Free Press

The WV Record Reports:

Two local board of educations face lawsuits for allegedly removing the spring break from the school calendar.

Christina Jones and Norma Myers both filed lawsuits March 10 in Kanawha Circuit Court against the West Virginia State Board of Education and Calhoun County Board of Education, citing violation of statute and detrimental reliance.

The complaint states both are employed by the Calhoun County Board of Education (Myers’ complaint says she is a teacher) and on February 27, Calhoun County Board of Education cancelled the spring break it had scheduled for March 17-21. The plaintiffs said they and other Board of Education employees will sustain hardship and economic loss as a result of the sudden change in the school calendar, according to the complaint.

The plaintiffs are seeking an injunction preventing the defendants from removing the spring break, any monetary damages and fees.

Both are being represented by Andrew J. Katz of The Katz Working Families Law Firm LC.

Kanawha Circuit Court case numbers 14-C-501 (Jones) and 14-C-502 (Myers).

~~  Whitney Brakken - WV Record ~~

U.S. Supreme Court Voids Overall Contribution Limits

The Gilmer Free Press

The Supreme Court struck down limits Wednesday in federal law on the overall campaign contributions the biggest individual donors may make to candidates, political parties and political action committees.

The justices said in a 5-4 vote that Americans have a right to give the legal maximum to candidates for Congress and president, as well as to parties and PACs, without worrying that they will violate the law when they bump up against a limit on all contributions, set at $123,200 for 2013 and 2014. That includes a separate $48,600 cap on contributions to candidates.

The decision will allow the wealthiest contributors to pour millions of dollars into candidate and party coffers, although those contributions will be subject to disclosure under federal law. Big donors already can spend unlimited amounts on attacks ads and other outlets that have played an increasingly important role in campaigns.

But the court’s decision does not undermine limits on individual contributions to candidates for president or Congress, now $2,600 an election.

Chief Justice John Roberts announced the decision, which split the court’s liberal and conservative justices. Roberts said the aggregate limits do not act to prevent corruption, the rationale the court has upheld as justifying contribution limits.

The overall limits “intrude without justification on a citizen’s ability to exercise ‘the most fundamental First Amendment activities,‘“ Roberts said, quoting from the court’s seminal 1976 campaign finance ruling in Buckley v. Valeo.

Justice Clarence Thomas agreed with the outcome of the case, but wrote separately to say that he would have gone further and wiped away all contribution limits.

Justice Stephen Breyer, writing for the liberal dissenters, said that the court’s conservatives had “eviscerated our nation’s campaign finance laws” through Wednesday’s ruling and 2010 decision in Citizens United that lifted limits on independent spending by corporations and labor unions.

“If the court in Citizens United opened a door, today’s decision we fear will open a floodgate,“ Breyer said in comments from the bench. “It understates the importance of protecting the political integrity of our governmental institution. It creates, we think, a loophole that will allow a single individual to contribute millions of dollars to a political party or to a candidate’s campaign.“

Congress enacted the limits in the wake of Watergate-era abuses to discourage big contributors from trying to buy votes with their donations and to restore public confidence in the campaign finance system.

But in a series of rulings in recent years, the Roberts court has struck down provisions of federal law aimed at limiting the influence of big donors as unconstitutional curbs on free speech rights.

Most notably, in 2010, the court divided 5 to 4 in the Citizens United case to free corporations and labor unions to spend as much as they wish on campaign advocacy, as long as it is independent of candidates and their campaigns. That decision did not affect contribution limits to individual candidates, political parties and political action committees.

Republican activist Shaun McCutcheon of Hoover, Ala., the national Republican party and Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky challenged the overall limits on what contributors may give in a two-year federal election cycle. The total is $123,200, including a separate $48,600 cap on contributions to candidates, for 2013 and 2014.

Limits on individual contributions, currently $2,600 per election to candidates for Congress, are not at issue.

Relaxed campaign finance rules have reduced the influence of political parties, McConnell and the GOP argued.

McCutcheon gave the symbolically significant $1,776 to 15 candidates for Congress and wanted to give the same amount to 12 others. But doing so would have put him in violation of the cap.

Nearly 650 donors contributed the maximum amount to candidates, PACs and parties in the last election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

The court did not heed warnings from Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. and advocates of campaign finance limits that donors would be able to funnel large amounts of money to a favored candidate in the absence of the overall limit.

The Republicans also called on the court to abandon its practice over nearly 40 years of evaluating limits on contributions less skeptically than restrictions on spending.

The differing levels of scrutiny have allowed the court to uphold most contribution limits, because of the potential for corruption in large direct donations to candidates. At the same time, the court has found that independent spending does not pose the same risk of corruption and has applied a higher level of scrutiny to laws that seek to limit spending.

If the court were to drop the distinction between contributions and expenditures, even limits on contributions to individual candidates for Congress, currently $2,600 per election, would be threatened, said Fred Wertheimer, a longtime supporter of stringent campaign finance laws.

The case is McCutcheon v. FEC, 12-536.

Gilmer County Family Court Report – 03.26.14

The Gilmer Free Press

On Wednesday, March 26, 2014 Family Court Judge Larry Whited made 2 trips to Glenville to hear family court matters.


•  One divorce was dismissed.

•  One wedding was cancelled.


After returning to Calhoun County the Judge discovered that one case had been left off his docket so he returned and heard it.

•  At the hearing on a modification he appointed a guardian ad litem in the matter and it will be rescheduled.

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