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Whoever happens to stop by this blog may wonder why I started it. Whenever I read news stories online I always like to put a face to the story. So I got to thinking maybe other people would as well. I always keep up on WV news and most stories don't have the mugshots with them so I hunt them up online and post them with the story. It's not that hard and I don't know why the state news sites don't do it

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Morgan turns himself in

CLARKSBURG -- Joshua Chance Morgan, 25, of Salem is charged with first degree murder, nighttime burglary and conspiracy, for his connection with the Greenwood Hills murder of Clarence Leeson, according to Sgt. Jason Snider.
Morgan turned himself into the Clarksburg Police Department on Friday, Nov. 21 and is being held without bond in the North Central Regional Jail.

Christopher Robey, 26, and Megan Titus, 21, were arrested in San Diego as part of the murder investigation and will be brought back to W.Va. next week.

Police are still searching for the last suspect, Nicholas Robey.

The four allegedly broke into Leeson home and sturck him in the head with an unknown object, causing his death. Several guns and other items were stolen from the home.


Nighttime burglary

WHEELING -- Terry Lee Herring, 30, was arrested Saturday around 2 a.m. after a Wheeling resident came to police complaining their home had been burglarized.
Herring is in the Northern Regional Jail on $11,000 bond.

He is charged with nighttime burglary and petty larceny.


2 suspects surrender

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Two suspects in what police described as the "gruesome" killing of South Charleston resident James Andrew Gillespie are now in custody after each turned himself in to police in separate circumstances without incident Saturday.

South Charleston Police Sgt. Michael Greathouse said a lawyer for Michael Thompson called early Saturday to say his client wanted to turn himself in. Greathouse was one of four officers who went to an address on Pinch Street in South Charleston to get Thompson.

"I don't know what connection the house had to anyone, but we were told he would be waiting on the steps," Greathouse said.

He also said the suspect, who is 18, had nothing to say, acting on the advice of his lawyer.

Police continued to search for the second suspect, Jimmy Eugene Thompson, 19, of 505 E St., South Charleston, hours after the first turned himself in.

But negotiations resulted in Jimmy Thompson turning himself in a few hours later. The two men are not related.

South Charleston Police Chief Brad Rinehart said that he and other officers had been negotiating with "mutual parties" to have the second Thompson turn himself in.

Rinehart said, "I want to reassure neighbors in that area that this was an isolated incident. The detective bureau has been working around the clock, and this shows their dedication."

Rinehart said Jimmy Thompson will be arraigned and likely taken to the South Central Regional Jail.

Police think both men knew Gillespie, who was found dead in his Macon Street home in South Charleston on Friday.

Police say both men had been in the victim's home earlier in the day drinking, according to a report Detective A.R. Gordon filed in Kanawha County Magistrate's Court after the first suspect was arrested.

A witness told police the men "were going to steal the victim's prescription medication." According to the police report, as soon as the victim realized his prescription drugs could be stolen, one suspect punched the victim in the face.

The witness who later contacted police fled as soon as he saw a suspect punch the victim, according to the same report.

Detective J.D. Gray of the South Charleston Police Department said a medical examiner performed an autopsy on Gillespie on Saturday, but he declined to give details.

According to Gordon's report in Magistrate's Court, Gillespie had been beaten and stabbed numerous times. After an appearance before a magistrate, Michael Thompson was taken to the South Central Regional Jail where he was being held without bond on a murder charge.

Jimmy Thompson

Michael Thompson


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Teenager turns himself in

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va.- One of two teenagers wanted in connection with a gruesome murder in South Charleston has turned himself in to police.

South Charleston Police say 18-year-old Michael Shane Thompson's attorney contacted them this morning saying he wanted to surrender. He has since been taken into custody -- and is going to the hospital to get checked out.

19-year-old Jimmy Eugene Thompson is still wanted in connected with the case. Police say the two Thompsons, who are not related, killed 51-year-old James Gillispie at his home on Macon Street Friday morning during some sort of physical altercation. The scene was described by detectives as "gruesome."

Officers say the suspects and the victim were acquaintances -- and the teens had been at his house in the past.


3rd suspect in stabbing returns to state

CLARKSBURG -- The third suspect in the stabbing death of Terry Lewis, 61, was returned to West Virginia on Thursday, Nov. 19.
Jeffrey Taylor, 21, was arrested in Meansville, GA for his connection to the Oct. 25 home invasion and stabbing in Quiet Dell.

Taylor, Alexander Bosley, 21, and Cindy Allman, 18, have all been charged with first degree murder. Officials say Bosley and Allman have confessed to their roles in the stabbing and break-in, but could not comment on what Taylor revealed during his interrogation.

The department is processing the physical evidence recovered from the scene now, according to Harrison County Sheriff's Deputy Lt. Pat McCarty. Some of those items may have been used to stab Lewis to death.

Taylor, Bosley, and Allman had just recently met, McCarty said, but he could not comment on how or where.

Taylor had been living in Georgia, but McCarty said he came to West Virginia because he had a girlfriend here.

He was also arrested in June 2008 for grand larceny auto, according to court documents, for allegedly stealing his girlfriend's vehicle. That charge was later dropped.

Magistrate Tammy Marple arraigned Taylor on Friday, Nov. 20. He is in the North Central Regional Jail, with no bond set. Bosley and Allman are being held there as well.


Teenager arrested for robbery

ST. ALBANS -- 18 year old Herschel Dylan Cole of South Charleston was arrested early Saturday morning, according to a press release issued by the Saint Albans Police Department.
He's accused of stealing several items from a residence in the 2200 block of Grant Avenue in St. Albans.

The man living in the residence woke up to find Cole in his house, According to the press release.

Cole fled the scene, but police found him about four houses down from where he committed the robbery.

Police have said that Cole confessed to working about three hours to steal all of the items, one of which included a 50 inch Plasma Television.

He was charged with Nighttime Burglary, and was taken to the South Central Regional Jail for arraignment.

According the police officers, the items were all returned to the resident.


2 bank robbers get the max

Two of the men involved in the robbery of Mountain Valley Bank in Mill Creek in December 2008 were sentenced for their roles in the crime Friday morning in Randolph County Circuit Court.

Randolph County Circuit Judge Jaymie Godwin Wilfong sentenced Carl A. Hughes, 24, and Joshua Pennington, 23, to the maximum penalties for their felony convictions. Hughes received 11 to 30 years in prison after pleading guilty to one count each of bank robbery and conspiracy, both felonies. Pennington was sentenced to one to five years in prison after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy, a felony. Both men were also fined $10,000 each.

Hughes was represented by attorney Russell Stobbs and Pennington was represented by attorney Tim Prentice.

Prior to handing down Hughes' sentence, Wilfong said she was imposing the maximum penalty but still doesn't think it's enough.

"Any sentence I impose cannot repair the damage that you have done, not only to the employees of this bank but everyone in this community," Wilfong said. "Bank robbery just isn't something that is supposed to happen here. This is a nice, quiet, law-abiding community. You're not even from here. You came from outside of our county and committed a horrible offense ... I'm sentencing you to the maximum sentence that I can give you, but quite frankly I don't think it's enough."

Following the hearings, Randolph County Prosecuting Attorney Richard T. Busch said the safety of the community is "paramount," and placing the men in prison for a lengthy term helps ensure that safety.

"I believe that the true essence of the crime was not the taking of the $20,000," Busch said. "Yes, Hughes and Pennington stole $20,000, but more importantly they stole the safety and the security and the comfort of these employees. When the employees went to work that day, they were thinking about Christmas and New Years, they weren't thinking about having a gun put in their face ... Once someone has a gun pointed at their head and their life threatened, nothing can change that. The horrible memories of the Mountain Valley Bank robbery will never go away."

Mountain Valley Bank President Dick Harvey also spoke at both hearings. He was accompanied by two bank employees, but neither addressed the court.

During Hughes' hearing, Harvey said the robbery has had a "traumatic effect" on the bank's employees.

"During the holiday season last year, our good and honest, hard-working employees were confronted by somebody coming in the bank who was very loud and abrasive with a loaded gun," Harvey said. "By the grace of God, no customers came into the bank. Who knows what would have happened at that point. The trauma and psychological distress and terror our folks experienced that day were beyond description."

Hughes did not speak on his own behalf during his hearing.

Pennington told the court he did not know Hughes was going to use his car to rob the bank. Instead, he said he thought Hughes was going to use the car to rob a drug dealer living in the community.

"I just want to apologize to the victims and the community for even getting involved in the crime," Pennington said. "I had no prior knowledge of the bank being robbed. Although, I did conspire to receive the stolen money. I had my choice to turn the offer down and I chose to accept the money."

Hughes and Pennington were named in a nine-count indictment that accused the duo of conspiring to rob Mountain Valley Bank in Mill Creek on Dec. 30, 2008, and Hughes of committing the robbery.

Hughes was initially charged with seven felonies including conspiracy, first-degree robbery, bank robbery with a dangerous weapon, wanton endangerment involving a firearm, grand larceny, transfer of stolen goods and attempting to escape custody. Pennington was charged with one count each of conspiracy and receiving stolen goods.

According to the indictment, Hughes is accused of pointing a .38 caliber revolver at the face of a bank teller and commanding her to give him the money in the drawer during the robbery. He is accused of taking $21,060.

Pennington is charged with receiving more than $1,000, "in which he knew to be stolen in a bank robbery," the indictment states.

A third man, Matthew Pennington, 22, of 1303 Essex St., Bluefield, pleaded guilty in May to an information charging him with one count of grand larceny, a felony. Matthew Pennington was accused of driving the getaway car during the robbery.

Wilfong sentenced Matthew Pennington to two to 10 years in the state penitentiary. She also included a recommendation to the parole board that Pennington serve a minimum of five years to account for each victim inside the bank during the time of the robbery.


Man uses mail to harass

BLUEFIELD — A Mercer County man who was arrested last week on a federal criminal complaint, is scheduled to appear before a federal magistrate judge next Tuesday at U.S. District Court in Beckley.

Thomas Creighton Shrader, 55, of Rock, is accused of using the mail, “to engage in a course of conduct that caused substantial emotional distress to that person and placed that person in reasonable fear of the death of, or serious bodily injury to, the person,” according to an affidavit detailing the facts supporting the criminal complaint.

Special Agent Terry Schwartz of the FBI, stated in an affidavit attached to the complaint that Shrader had been convicted in McDowell County on two counts of first-degree murder for a double homicide that occurred on July 16, 1975. Schwartz stated in his affidavit that one of the victims in the double homicide was the mother of Shrader’s ex-girlfriend. He stated that Shrader served 18 years for that crime and “during the course of his incarceration, Shrader continued to contact (his ex-girlfriend) through letters and phone calls.”

According to Schwartz’s affidavit, “during the course of his incarceration,” Shrader instituted a civil complaint against his ex-girlfriend, “costing her and her family thousands of dollars in legal fees.” The ex-girlfriend and her family moved to another state, but “Shrader has continued to harass (her) and her family through letters and phone calls,” according to Schwartz’s affidavit.

Local law enforcement officers in the state where the family had moved, listened to some of Shrader’s calls. One officer who listened to a call, identified himself as an officer and told Shrader to stop calling the ex-girlfriend and her family “or he would be prosecuted,” Schwartz stated in his affidavit. The family contacted the FBI on Oct. 26, after they received a 32-page letter from Shrader “containing numerous threats and harassing language.” Schwartz swore the affidavit before Federal Magistrate Judge R. Clarke Vandevort on Nov. 12, and Vandevort issued an arrest warrant. Shrader was arrested the following day, and had his initial appearance before Vandevort who scheduled his preliminary/detention hearing for Nov. 17.

According to an order entered Friday at U.S. District Court in Bluefield, the government and defense counsel agreed to continue the preliminary hearing until 10 a.m., on Nov. 24, at U.S. District Court in Beckley. Assistant U.S. Attorney L. Anna Forbes represented the government at the hearing on Nov. 17, and Assistant Federal Public Defender Christian M. Capece represented the defendant.


Parolee hits school bus

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A South Charleston man was arrested Thursday after allegedly fleeing from police and colliding with a school bus in his vehicle.

Bernie Joe Mallory II, 28, was driving near Kanawha State Forest at about 5:30 p.m. when he tried to pass a school bus that had stopped and extended its onboard stop sign, said Sgt. L.G. O'Bryan of the State Police detachment in South Charleston.

Mallory, who was on parole, told troopers he became spooked after spotting a police cruiser. O'Bryan said Mallory hit the school bus, tearing off the stop sign.

Mallory fled, but was discovered on an access road in Kanawha State Forest about an hour later. During his arrest, Mallory became belligerent, scuffled with troopers and kicked out the window of the police cruiser, O'Bryan said. He said Mallory had apparently been drinking, and had two children in the car with him.

Mallory was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, child endangerment, obstructing an officer, resisting arrest, assault on a police officer and battery. His girlfriend, 30-year-old Sarah Hall, was charged with obstructing an officer and battery on a police officer.

Mallory and Hall were in the South Central Regional Jail on Friday. Bond was set at $5,000 for Hall and $10,000 for Mallory.


Friday, November 20, 2009

Arson charges

A Cabins man has been arrested for allegedly having a connection to the blazes on Nov. 10 and Nov. 11 that left the Smoke Hole Caverns gift shop and restaurant in a pile of ashes.

Brent Michael Combs, 25, has been charged with one count of first-degree arson, one count of second-degree arson and three separate counts of injury caused by arson. He is being housed in the Potomac Highlands Regional Jail on a $285,000 bond.

According to Grant County Sheriff Deputy S.L. Wrachford, Combs has obtained legal counsel. Authorities do not know what motives Combs may have had for allegedly setting the fires.

The fires are still under investigation by the Grant County Sheriff's Department and state fire marshal's office. The state fire marshal's office is offering up to a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of a person or persons connected with the crime. Anyone with information about the fires is asked to call the Grant County Sheriff's Department at 304-257-1818 or Assistant Fire Marshal Patrick Barker at 1-800-233-FIRE.


Pagan pleads guilty

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- An Ohio man has pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge in a racketeering case targeting the Pagans Motorcycle Club

Steve Harlan Stover of Proctorville, Ohio, admitted in federal court Thursday that he helped other Pagans members shut down an affiliated club for being disloyal.

The 50-year-old construction worker pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to commit and assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering.

Stover is one of 55 Pagans members and associates from West Virginia, Kentucky, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Florida charged in the case.

He faces up to 20 years in prison. Sentencing is set for March 8.


Firefighter charged with arson

PARKERSBURG - A 19-year-old volunteer firefighter with Pond Creek Volunteer Fire Department was charged with arson Thursday after allegedly setting a brush fire in a field off California Ridge Road, near Belleville, early Tuesday afternoon.

David Keith Richards, 402 Toppins Grove, Murraysville, lit a pile of trash on fire with motor oil in a field near California Ridge Road and the fire spread several feet into the grass, said Lt. Shawn Graham with Wood County Sheriff's Office.

Richards called 911 after setting the fire, officials said.

When questioned by Graham and Assistant State Fire Marshal Brad Hartley, Richards confessed to setting the fire deliberately to give his fire department something to do, said Graham.

Pond Creek Volunteer Fire Chief Kevin Rhodes said he believed the brush fire burned about three square feet. Pond Creek Volunteer Fire Department officials did not respond to the brush fire Tuesday and did not know many details about the incident, he said.

Richards was arraigned before Wood County Magistrate Donna Jackson at 10 p.m. Thursday and released on $25,000 bond.


Bond revoked for woman

A Beckley woman charged in a pair of 2008 pharmacy robberies is in jail after her bond was revoked by Raleigh County Circuit Judge Robert Burnside Thursday.

Amanda Severino, 30, is charged with two counts of first-degree robbery, two counts of conspiracy and one count of possession of oxycodone in connection to her alleged roles in the March 2008 armed robberies of the Beckley Kmart pharmacy and Beckley Pharmacy.

Within days of the alleged robberies, Severino was released on $20,000 bond and ordered to long-term drug treatment. Immediately upon completion of treatment, Severino was to have reported directly to Southern Regional Jail to await trail.

Prosecutor Kristen Keller said Severino completed 13 months of treatment in Pennsylvania but never went to jail as ordered.

Beckley police discovered the situation Nov. 11 when responding to a 911 call at a residence on Hartley Avenue.

Keller and defense attorney Chris Lefler said Severino, along with friends, including co-defendant and girlfriend Amanda Lilly, spent the evening of Nov. 10 “partying,” taking Xanax and oxycodone.

Lefler said Severino awoke the next morning to find Lilly, 25, of Prosperity, dead from an overdose.

Keller asked that Severino’s bond be revoked on grounds she did not self-report to SRJ and was abusing drugs in direct violation of the conditions of her bond.

Lefler, however, told Burnside his client, who he said was traumatized by the death of her girlfriend, had admitted herself into Beckley Appalachian Regional Hospital for psychiatric treatment, and asked that the judge allow her to report to jail after she was discharged.

Keller objected, saying treatment hadn’t helped Severino before and jail was the right answer.

“If she feels guilty, awful and grief-stricken, she should,” Keller said, adding Severino herself was likely to overdose or participate in the death of others if not incarcerated.

Burnside agreed with Keller, telling Lefler his proposal had failed once before.

“The alternative proposed by the defendant might be inviting if it hadn’t been done (before),” he said.

Lilly, who was charged with the same crimes as Severino, was awaiting trial at the time of her death.

Co-defendant Rebecca Dawn Earls of Crab Orchard was convicted earlier this year and is serving concurrent sentences of 15 years for first-degree robbery and one to five years for conspiracy.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Stabbing leads to arrest

HUNTINGTON -- Huntington police are investigating after a man was stabbed in Huntington early Thursday morning.
It happened around 2:30 a.m. Thursday at 419 Sixth St.

Police said a verbal argument between Robert Martin and Dale Howell lead to a physical fight. Howell recieved a minor stab wound.

Police arrested Martin, 40, charging him with malicious wounding and obstruction.

Howell was charged with obstruction and also had a warrant for domestic battery. Howell was taken to a local hospital for treatment.

Martin is in the Western Regional jail.


Drug arrest

James Wiley, 20, Klaus Street, Beckley; delivery of marijuana.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Teen charged with vandalism

WILLIAMSON, W.Va.- A Mingo County teenager faces charges in connection with the vandalism of a transformer that left nearly 5,000 customers without electricity for almost 24 hours.

West Virginia State Police charged 18-year-old Steven Spry of Verdunville on Monday with giving false information to an officer during the investigation.

American Electric Power has said someone shot a transformer in Dingess. Replacing the equipment cost about $1 million.

The shooting was among 20 acts of vandalism since Oct. 6 that targeted AEP equipment.

AEP is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest or conviction.


Woman arrested for attempted murder

SISSONVILLE, W.Va.- A woman from Kenna faces second degree attempted murder charges after an incident in Sissonville. It happened early Wednesday morning on Walker Drive.
According to the criminal complaint, Kimberly Ann Daugherty, 48, of Kenna, came to her daughter's house and got into a fight with her. Richard Shamblin, 22, allegedly tried to stop Daughtery from attacking her daughter and took the disturbance outside on the driveway.

When Shamblin tried to keep Daugherty from leaving the house, investigators say she pushed Shamblin behind a Jeep that was backing down the driveway. According to a news release, the Jeep was driven by Daugherty's sister, Rita F. Taylor, 50, of Charleston.

During the argument, Daugherty also shouted "I'm going to kill you," according to the complaint.

Shamblin was taken to the hospital with a leg injury.

When investigators arrived on scene Daugherty was gone, but it wasn't long before they spotted the Jeep on Sissonville Drive.

Investigators say Daugherty denied ever being on Walker Drive, but the other two people in the vehicle said she was there and was in a confrontation with her daughter.


EMS paramedic likes exposing himself

FAIRMONT -- EMS paramedic Edward Utter, 40, has faced indecent exposure charges in the past, and not just in West Virginia.
Utter was arrested in 1998 for third- and fourth-degree sexual offense, indecent exposure, and second-degree assault, according to the Prince George's Cuonty Court Clerk's Office.

A jury found Utter guilty of second degree assault, and he was on probation until Sept. 23, 2001.

Utter was arrested last week for indecent exposure.

Fairmont Police accuse Utter of exposing his genitals to a woman in an alley between Benoni Avenue and Walnut Avenue Thursday, according to his criminal complaint.

The woman picked Utter's picture out of a police photo array Friday, the complaint states.

This is the second time he's faced the charge in West Virginia.

Bridgeport Police arrested Utter for the same charge back in March 2006.

Utter was accused of exposing himself to a 15-year-old girl on Johnson Avenue.

Prosecutors entered into a pretrial diversion with Utter, meaning his charges would be dropped if he stayed out of trouble.

The Harrison County Prosecutor's Office said Utter is past the time when his charges could have been re-filed.

Utter works for Harrison County EMS and the Taylor County Emergency Squad.

Both organizations say they are investigating the matter internally.

Utter also works at Anmoore EMS.


Fake prescription gets woman arrested

ST. ALBANS -- St. Albans police are investigating after a convicted felon attempts to pick-up a fraudulent prescription.
According to St. Albans Police, shortly before 9 p.m. Tuesday, workers at the pharmacy in the Kroger Supermarket called police when a woman came in to pick up a prescription that was fraudulent.

The pharmacy had been alerted to the scam by the pharmacy at the St. Albans K-Mart. In verifying a prescription in the same name, it was discovered that the physician had not issued it.

The prescription was for Lortab, a narcotic pain killer.

The woman that came to pick up the filled prescription was Lisa Michele Burnsworth, 40. The prescription was in her boyfriend's name.

She was arrested and taken to Kanawha County Magistrate Court for arraignment.

She was charged with attempting to obtain a fraudulent prescription. Burnsworth was released on a $20,000 personal recognizance by Magistrate Carol Fouty.

Burnsworth is on federal supervised release in relation to a meth lab conviction from a 2005 meth lab arrest in St. Albans.

She is employed at a doctor's office in the Charleston area, but not the same doctor whose name was used on the fraudulent prescription.


Bank robber back in prison

FAIRMONT — A convicted bank robber charged with holding up the Hi-Life Lounge on Fairmont’s East Side this summer is back in prison following a federal preliminary hearing last week.

Farmington resident Roy Franklin Hillberry II, 31, allegedly violated conditions of federal supervised release when he was charged with first-degree robbery for the Hi-Life Lounge incident in July.

Hillberry was convicted for federal bank robbery in 2004 in the Southern District Court of Ohio. He was sentenced to 51 months in prison to be followed by three years supervised release.


More time for inmate

FAIRMONT — An incarcerated Fairmont man will be spending a few more years in jail following a plea hearing in Marion County Circuit Court Tuesday.

Raymond Frederick Leonard, 27, pleaded guilty to a felony charge of delivery of a controlled substance and violating terms of probation for an incident in which he allegedly delivered hydrocodone pills to undercover officers.

Leonard was sentenced to one to five years in prison for each offense by Marion Judge David R. Janes, which will be delivered concurrently.

According to the criminal complaint as read by Marion Prosecutor Pat Wilson at Tuesday’s hearing, Leonard allegedly delivered one crushed and 10 full hydrocodone pills to members of the Three Rivers Drug Task Force.


High speed chase

A Barbour County man who led police on a chase through two counties Sunday at speeds that sometimes exceeded 105 miles per hour is in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $75,000 bond.

According to the report, Jonathon Swiger, 22, of 410 Locust Ave., Belington, was being pursued by the Barbour County Sheriff's Department on Talbott Road in Barbour County when the deputy lost sight of Swiger's black 1996 Chevrolet Cavalier. Cpl. T.A. Menendez of the Buckhannon detachment of the West Virginia State Police was notified and proceeded to the Talbott Road where he saw Swiger turn left onto Route 33 and fail to stop at the stop sign. Menendez began to pursue Swiger and at times Swiger was reaching speeds in excess of 105 miles per hour. When approaching Childer's Run Road in Upshur County, Cpl. Troy Brady III of the Upshur County Sheriff's Department was waiting in the center between the east- and west-bounds lanes with his emergency lights flashing. Upon seeing the sheriff's vehicle, Swiger then pulled over and came to a stop.

An investigation revealed that Swiger was driving on a revoked license for under the age of 21 with a measurable amount of alcohol. Swiger was charged with driving on a suspended license and fleeing from an officer in a vehicle, both misdemeanors. Swiger is also wanted for an undisclosed felony in Barbour County.


Cell tower break in

Two Kanawha County men have been arrested after Fayette County authorities say they broke into a cell phone tower site and stole copper wire.

Michael Jarrell, 23, and Steven Little, 25, both of Gallagher, were charged with breaking and entering, grand larceny and destruction of property with a value greater than $2,500, Sheriff Steve Kessler said. Jarrell was held at Southern Regional Jail on $15,000 bond. Little was released on $15,000 bond.

At 1:55 a.m. Monday, a break-in at a U.S. Cellular tower on Paint Creek Road, near Mossy, was reported, Kessler said. According to the preliminary investigation, those responsible accessed the facility by cutting through a security fence. They then forced their way into a buildings and cut several lengths of electrical wire. Damage at the tower site was more than $3,000.

Deputy W.K. Willis checked the area for potential suspects and made contact with two people who had copper wire in their vehicle, Kessler said. He was able to find out the pair had rented a room at the Midway T&C Motel in Mossy the previous evening.

Kessler said deputies executed a search warrant at the room and recovered a “substantial” quantity of copper wire and tools apparently used in the theft. Based on information gathered in the preliminary investigation, charges were filed against Jarrell and Little.

Kessler noted there are numerous reports of cellular tower site break-ins. Deputies have investigated two reported break-ins at a tower site in the Pea Ridge Road area of Oak Hill, and there have been several break-ins at sites in the Powellton area. He said people responsible for such crimes cost businesses a substantial amount of money and endanger public safety.

“When thieves target these cellular tower sites, they steal copper wire that they then sell for a few dollars at scrap metal dealers,” Kessler said. “These thefts cost the cellular companies thousands of dollars to repair the damages done by these thieves.

“In an age where more and more people are relying on cellular phones for all of their communication needs, this type of theft could easily result in the loss of someone’s life. Imagine the possibility of being unable to contact 911 to request an ambulance for a loved one because a thief has damaged a cellular tower to gain a few quick dollars.”


Murder suspect assaults step-father

A Fayette County man charged with murder in the November 2008 death of his son is back in jail after being arrested on a domestic battery charge.

Henry Clay Jenkins, 35, of Oak Hill, who had been free on $40,000 bond, was charged Monday with misdemeanor domestic battery. Sheriff Steve Kessler said Jenkins would remain jailed until his bond status could be considered in Fayette Circuit Court.

Kessler said deputies responding to a domestic situation on Summerlee Road in Oak Hill determined Jenkins had physically assaulted his stepfather.

Jenkins was awaiting trial on a murder charge in the death of his 14-year-old son, Christian Clay Jenkins, a cystic fibrosis patient who died in a Charleston hospital last November.

A state medical examiner’s autopsy indicated the use of illicit drugs was a contributing factor in Christian Jenkins’ death, Kessler said. Investigators also determined prompt medical attention was not sought for the boy after he encountered respiratory distress.

Henry Clay Jenkins was charged with murder in late May and was indicted by a county grand jury in September.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

3 try to rob Kroger's

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Three Charleston men were in jail Tuesday after allegedly trying to rob a Kroger store on the city's West Side.

Sgt. Autumn Davis of the Charleston Police Department said Emmanuel Covington, 18, allegedly walked into the Kroger store on Delaware Avenue at about 6:30 a.m. and looked around before going back outside. A short time later, 18-year-old Terrance Bright, wearing a hooded sweatshirt, allegedly walked into the store and put his finger in the clerk's back as if he had a gun.

Raimonde Singleton, 19, was apparently waiting outside in a car.

Davis said Bright allegedly demanded money from the store clerk. When he refused, Davis allegedly fled the store. He and the others piled into the car and drove off, Davis said.

Davis said police stopped the car about a block away on Delaware Avenue and Randolph Street.

Covington, Bright and Singleton were all arrested and charged with first-degree robbery, said Kanawha County Magistrate Jack Pauley. They were in South Central Regional Jail on Tuesday in lieu of $75,000 bond each.


Man gets 1 to 5 yrs for assault

A man accused of kidnapping a juvenile could spend the next 5 years behind bars.

Lindsey Tibbs was sentenced to 1 to 5 years for unlawful assault Monday in Judge J.D. Beane's courtroom.

Tibbs was arrested in February 2007.

Police say he allegedly kidnapped a juvenile after a drug deal gone bad.

Authorities say Tibbs and another individual demanded money and then assaulted the victim.

He was orginally charged with kidnapping, which is a capital offense.

Tibbs pleaded guilty to the unlawful assault charge in a plea agreement with the state.

He's in the North Central Regional Jail


3 arrested in stabbing death

CLARKSBURG -- Three suspects have been arrested in the October 25, 2009 death of a Harrison County man.
Alexander Calvin Bosley, 22, of Clarksburg, Cindy Virginia Allman, 18, of Idamay (formerly Florida), and Jeffery Powell Taylor, 20, of Meansville, Ga., face first degree murder charges and commission of a felony for their part in the murder of Terry Lewis, 61, at his Hastings Run home, near Quiet Dell.

The Harrison County Sheriff’s Department says the motives were robbery and revenge. According to the criminal complaint, Bosley had known Lewis as a child and was “seeking revenge for incidents that occurred during his childhood.” They also believed he had money in his residence.

Marano would not specify how Bosley knew Lewis or why he wanted revenge.

Bosley is said to have driven the other two suspects to Lewis’ home and waited outside. Allman and Taylor reportedly entered the home while the family was at home and sleeping.

Taylor is then believed to have cut Lewis’ throat, then Allman stabbed him after an altercation outside of the bedroom. Allman and Taylor then fled the scene with Bosley. Lewis died of his wounds on the scene.

The Sheriff’s Department said Lt. Pat McCarty has worked solely on this case since the incident happened in October. Marano said the case was solved thanks in large part to citizens who stepped forward with information in the last few days.

Allman was arrested in Marion County at approximately 1 a.m. on Monday. Taylor was arrested in his hometown of Meansville, Ga, near Atlanta at 1 p.m. by the Pike County Sheriff Office SWAT Team. Bosley was arrested just before 3 p.m. on Monday in Harrison County. All arrests were made without incident.

All three have confessed to the murder.

Marano said Bosley knew Allman and Taylor through a network of friends. Allman and Taylor had not been in West Virginia for long. They both reportedly came to the area for separate relationships, and were not believed to have come to the area specifically to commit the crime.

Trial is pending Taylor's extradition to West Virginia.


Monday, November 16, 2009

3 arrested on drug charges

MOUNDSVILLE -- According to police, Willie Harris, Sumer Wilson and Andrew Whipkey were arrested in Moundsville late Saturday night by West Virginia State Police.
The three are all charged with possession with the intent to deliver and conspiracy.

Wilson and Whipkey bonded out on Sunday, but Harris remains in the northern regional jail on $20,000 bond.


Man arrested on drug charges

INSTITUTE, W.Va.- A man from Dunbar faces drug charges after police say they found crack cocaine in his possession.

The alleged crime happened Friday night in a parking lot near the Smoot Avenue Apartments in Institute.

According to a news release, Kanawha County Sheriff's Deputies saw several people loitering around in the parking lot where there were "No Loitering" signs posted.

Investigators later found none of the people lived there. Deputies also say they found Jabryan D. Timbers, 25, of Dunbar, with a plastic "Tylenol" bottle containing 20 rocks of crack cocaine and a small bag of marijuana.

The crack cocaine has a street value of approximately $400.00.

Timbers was charged with possession of crack cocaine with intent to distribute.


Shots fired leads to arrest

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Huntington Police arrested one person following a shots fired call in the 1600 block of Doulton Avenue late Saturday night.

According to the criminal complaint filed in Cabell County Magistrate Court, Tyrell Antraun Hughes, 22, has been charged with wanton endangerment.

According to the complaint, Hughes fired a handgun in the Northcott Housing Project.

There were no injuries.


Murder suspect back in court

The suspect charged in a murder that happened more than four years ago in South Charleston was in court Monday morning.

Thomas "Drew" Bess plead not guilty to charges of first degre murder in the death of Brandon Green.

Green was murdered outside Club Mystique in South Charleston in August 2005.

A second suspect, Hubert Scruggs is being held in a jail in Tennessee on an attempted murder charge.


Man shoots at family members

WORTHINGTON -- Robert Lee McIntire, 32, is charged with two counts of wanton endangerment.
The Marion County Sheriff's Department says McIntire was in the woods, outside of Worthington, when he got into a dispute with family members.

He fired a pistol, at least three times, at two family members, said deputies.

McIntire was arrested Saturday evening.

He's in the North Central Regional Jail with bond set at $1,500.


Arrest made in weekend murder

EAST LYNN -- Police in Wayne County have made an arrest in a weekend murder.
According to authorities, Brad Stapleton, 31, of East Lynn, was killed at his home on Bartram Fork Road around 2 a.m. Saturday. Roy Ellison Steele, 26, was arrested and charged with murder.

The two men, along with the victim’s wife, were drinking at the victim’s home. According to police reports, Stapleton left, then came back and the two men began to fight which progressed outside the home.

The victim’s wife told Detective Maynard of the Wayne County Sheriff's Department, that Steele hit her husband in the head with a crowbar.

Stapleton was pronounced dead at the scene. Steele was later arrested in his home.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Male dancer killed

JUSTICE — Authorities charged a 21-year-old Man resident with the Saturday morning murder of a male exotic dancer, who had performed at Club 2000 in Justice the night before.

Tommy “Blaine” Vance, 21, of Man, was arrested after he allegedly struck Jason Scott, of Myrtle Beach, S.C. around 3:15 a.m., with his white, extended-cab Chevy Silverado truck.

Mingo County Sheriff's Department members said Vance confronted Scott over a girl after Scott's performance and the two became involved in a verbal altercation, which moved to the club’s parking lot.

Vance identified himself as a West Virginia State Police officer, and proceeded to show Scott a fake policeman’s badge and then recovered a .22 caliber rifle from his truck.

The verbal altercation was broken up by club security and Vance left the parking lot in his truck, but did not leave the scene. Police said Vance circled the club five to six times before he struck Scott with his truck, dragging his body 20 to 30 feet.

Vance then fled to the Wyoming County line, only a few miles above the club’s location. Later Saturday morning, Vance returned to Mingo County and drove by the club as police were investigating.

After a short car pursuit, officers apprehended Vance at Stacy’s Equipment, also in Justice, where he was removed from his vehicle at gun-point.

Investigating Officer Larry Thomas explained that evidence of the crime, including blood, tissue and brain matter was found on Vance’s vehicle, as well as the loaded rifle. Thomas also reported that police have a surveillance video that documents the incident scene.

Scott was taken to Logan Appalachian Regional Hospital by Stafford EMS, but died later that morning.

Vance is charged with first-degree murder, fleeing, brandishing a deadly weapon, impersonating a police officer and seven counts of obstructing.


Accessory before the fact

HUNTINGTON -- There is new information and more charges are filed in a recent shooting at Club Babylon in Huntington.
Huntington police charged Nicole Hughes, 22, with accessory before the fact of attempted murder, a felony charge.

She is in the Western Regional jail.

The incident happened on Nov. 8 around 3 a.m. Huntington police were called to the club for a reported shooting. Three people were wounded and one died.

Reginald Marbury, Sontezz Lomax and Christopher Lewis were wounded.

Marbury was released from the hospital and charged with attempted murder. He's in the Western Regional jail.

Investigators believe Hughes gave Marbury a gun used in the shooting.

During the incident, Joe Porter, 30, from Huntington, was shot by a Huntington police officer. Investigators said Porter pointed a gun at a responding officer. He died a few hours later.


Mobile meth lab

POINT PLEASANT -- 26 year-old Edward Glenn was pulled over in the 2200 block of Millstone Road after driving away from a traffic stop Thursday, According to a press release from the Mason County Sheriff's Department.
During an investigation, a sheriff's deputy found the materials used to make a meth lab in Glenn's car.

Glenn is in the Western Regional Jail on $50,000 bond.


2 get time for drugs

Two men are headed to prison after pleading guilty to federal drug charges.

Earlier this week, 35 year-old Alfred Anderson was sentenced to 10 years in prison followed by three years of supervised release.

He pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting possession with intent to distribute crack in Mon County.

Also, 27 year-old Isaiah Prince was sentenced to nine years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.

He pleaded guilty to aiding and abetting the distribution of crack in Marion County.


First degree robbery

State police arrest a man accused of robbing Saccorsi's Bar in Preston County last month.

28-year-old Steve Dewitt is charged with first degree robbery.

State police say Dewitt went into the bar with a gun on October 6th wearing a clown mask, tied up the bartender, and got away with some cash. Police later recovered the mask and compared DNA with suspects in the case.

Dewitt did confess to the crime, and is being held in the North Central Regional Jail.


6 counts of animal cruelty

An Elkins man is behind bars after police find several malnourished puppies in his home

25-year old Christopher Knotts is charged with six counts of animal cruelty.

Police say the puppies were covered in feces and their stomachs were bloated.

A local veterinarian also saw the puppies and says they were malnourished, dehydrated and their feet were scalded and peeling because they had been standing in urine and stool.

Knotts is being held in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail.

Elkins Police were assisted by the Humane Officer of Randolph County.


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Armed robbery suspect arrested

WHEELING - Aaron Thomas Holstein is a suspect in two armed robberies, but for now he is only facing charges in one of them.

Wheeling police arrested Holstein, 34, at 10:39 p.m. Thursday in a home at 24 Seventh St. in North Wheeling. He is being held today in the Northern Regional Jail on a charge of aggravated robbery stemming from the Oct. 15 armed robbery of the Family Market Custom Killing butcher shop in Centerville.

Holstein also is suspected of robbing Warwood's Florist Creative Arts & Crafts at gunpoint on Oct. 14, police said.

Today, Wheeling Police Chief Robert Matheny said Holstein formerly lived in Ohio and has family in Belmont County. He said police learned recently that Holstein has lived in the North Wheeling residence for about the past month.

There were similarities in the armed robberies in Warwood and Centerville, according to reports. In both cases, the robber wandered around the business before pulling a small, silver handgun and demanding money.

Matheny said, although Holstein is a suspect in the Warwood crime, investigators are not ready to file charges against him in that robbery.

"We aren't going to jump to any conclusions," Matheny said. "We are not at that juncture in the investigation. He's definitely a suspect, and we're investigating all possibilities."

Warwood's Florist owner Linda Contraguerro said today she was relieved to learn the suspect is behind bars. She said she feared the man who robbed the store would return.

Warwood's Florist employee Alicia Drevna was the woman who faced the gun in that armed robbery. On Wednesday, she saw a picture of Holstein who had just been named as the suspect in the Belmont County robbery. She immediately believed it was the same man who pointed a gun at her.


Man threatens police with shotgun

MARTINSBURG - A West Virginia State Trooper responding to a report of a psychiatric patient threatening to burn his estranged wife's home on Tuesday night was confronted by a Falling Waters man armed with 20-gauge shotgun when he arrived at the scene.

In what his superiors have described as an act of bravery, Senior Trooper N.K. Campbell was able to wrestle the shotgun from 37-year-old Steven Eugene Rhoe's hands and prevent him from carrying through with his threat.

"Trooper N.K. Campbell showed extreme bravery and dedication to the preservation of life and property of our Berkeley County residents.

We are grateful that this incident turned out the way that it did, with no one getting injured as a result of the careless actions of Mr. Rhoe," 1st Sgt. E.D. Burnett, Troop 2 District 1 Commander, said Wednesday.

Rhoe was arrested and charged with attempted arson, wanton endangerment, fleeing on foot, brandishing, obstructing a police officer and domestic assault.

On Tuesday at about 7:10 p.m., Campbell and Senior Trooper J.R. Barker of the West Virginia State Police's Martinsburg Detachment responded to 35 Sour Lane in Falling Waters for a report of a psychiatric patient who was threatening to burn down his estranged wife's home, according to news release. Campbell was the first to arrive at the scene, followed by Barker.

When Campbell arrived, he saw a man, later identified as Rhoe, run into his estranged wife's home.

During this time, Campbell overheard Rhoe's estranged spouse state that the man was going into the house to retrieve a gun. As Campbell approached the front of the residence, Rhoe appeared at the front door armed with a 20-gauge shotgun in his hands, police said.

Campbell drew his firearm and began ordering Rhoe to drop the weapon. Rhoe failed to comply with the officer's orders and began to walk around the side of the home, police said. At that time, Campbell again ordered Rhoe to drop the firearm and to stop, however, he got no response from Rhoe, police said.

Rhoe then "picked up his pace" and started heading toward a trailer to the side and rear of his estranged wife's home. Campbell approached Rhoe as he was walking into the trailer and sprayed a burst of pepper spray to the man's face. Campbell then gained control of the shotgun and was able to place Rhoe in handcuffs, police said.

At that time, Barker arrived on scene and assisted with placing Rhoe into Campbell's vehicle.

It was later learned that Rhoe was retreating to the second trailer to obtain shells for his shotgun, police said.

Rhoe was taken to Martinsburg's State Police Detachment where he was processed and taken to the Eastern Regional Jail to await arraignment.


Boyfriend stabs girlfriend

Beckley police say a woman was stabbed during a domestic dispute Friday.

The incident was reported at a Harper Road residence around 8:30 a.m.

Initially, the woman alleged she was stabbed by an unknown white male who fled the scene.

The woman later admitted to police that it was her boyfriend, Joe Edward Jones, 43, of Beckley, who stabbed her during a dispute, Patrolman R.J. Gauldin said.

The woman was taken to Raleigh General Hospital for minor lacerations to the hand and stomach and was released.

Jones was charged with unlawful wounding and was being held at Southern Regional Jail on $20,000 bond. If convicted, he could face one to five years in prison.


4 indicted for robbery & assault

Christina Mae Stover, 19, Robert Franklin Stover Jr., 23, both of Hurricane, Roland Leonard Tate II, 23, of St. Albans, and Justin Paxson, 20, of Hurricane, were indicted on charges that they beat a man, fracturing his skull, and then robbed him before leaving him on the side of the road.

Robert Stover

Ronald Tate

Justin Paxson

Christina Stover


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