Serious crimes carrying serious sentences topped the agenda in Circuit Court on Tuesday (Jan 27).
Jeremy Dylan Newcamp, 19, of Castleton, pleaded guilty to one count each of assault and battery, grand larceny and entering a structure with the intent to commit larceny, as well as unlawfully possessing a firearm. Sentencing guidelines for the breaking and entering and grand larceny charges call for up to 20 years in the penitentiary; the firearms charge carries up to 5 years in the penitentiary. Citing the seriousness of the charges and possible sentences, Judge Jeffrey W. Parker decided to continue the case until Feb 24 for sentencing at that time.
Kathy Ann Vest of Amissville pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing oxycodone and was remanded into custody pending sentencing on March 19. Her attorney, Thomas Soldan, asked that Vest’s bond not be revoked and that she not be remanded, as incarceration would interrupt her detox efforts. In his ruling, Judge Parker said, “Ms. Vest should have anticipated the possibility of going to jail and having to go cold turkey.” He revoked her bond and remanded her to custody immediately.
Matthew Cory Fletcher, 21, of Amissville was due to appear for a violation of his probation after testing positive for marijuana, but he did not appear and neither did his attorney. Goff told the judge that Fletcher was in New York. When Judge Parker questioned whether Fletcher was allowed to go out of state under the terms of his probation, Goff said that Fletcher was following his attorney’s instructions. Judge Parker agreed to continue the case until Feb. 5, but said, “I strongly suggest [Fletcher] squeeze us into his schedule. He has avoided coming here a couple of times.”
Robert Conrad Butler, 40, and Jesse Owens Clark, 27, both of Culpeper, waived their rights to a jury trial. Butler’s bench trial is set for March 6, Owens’s for March 9. The two men were indicted for their involvement in an accident occurring Oct. 12, 2014. Butler faces DUI and hit-and-run charges after police said he caused and then fled a four-vehicle wreck on U.S. 522 in Scrabble. Clark, a passenger in the vehicle, was indicted for failure to report the accident.
Dominick Cortez Cropp of Amissville was indicted last March on charges of of breaking and entering and grand larceny. His case was continued until this session; however his court-appointed attorney, Nancy Kie Williams, was not available to appear. Goff told the judge that Williams had sent a letter to the court requesting a bench trial. Judge Parker said he had not received a letter and continued the case until Feb. 5, saying he preferred counsel to appear in court, not send a letter.
James Wines, 30, of Chester Gap, appeared for not completing mandatory VASAP courses, a condition of his probation on drug-related charges. Parker ordered Wines to re-enroll immediately and complete the courses. Otherwise, he would have to reappear in court on June 19.
In the Civil case of Daniel Spethman of Washington, Judge Parker continued the case. Spethmann is under judgement of debt originally stemming from a jury’s award in a civil trial in Dallas County in February 2004 — for $2.4 million (plus assorted interest). The original suit was brought by a principal of Strategic Gas Services Inc., a Texas company in which Spethmann was a partner, over what the former partner said was a $300,000 loan that was never repaid. The local circuit court actions are part of the legal collection process.
On Jan. 21, Deputy C. Koglin, stopped a vehicle for a traffic infraction in the area of Moriah Lane in Amissville. As a result, Kevin William Putnam, 29, of Amissvlle, was arrested and charged with driving under the influence, operating a vehicle without a license and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. A passenger, Sean Andrew Lee Bowlin, 20, of Stephens City, was also arrested and charged with underage possession of alcohol.
On Jan. 18, Koglin stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation on Viewtown Road in the area of Bethel Church. As a result, William D. Segrest, 26, of Rixeyville, was arrested and charged with driving under the influence and possession of marijuana. The day before, Jan. 17, Koglin stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation on Lee Highway in the area of Ash Tree Road, arresting Cory Patrick Rinker, 23, of Bristow, 23, on charges of possession of marijuana. On Jan. 13, Koglin stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation while traveling on Lee Highway. The operator, Earl Franklin Clanagan, 75, of Washington, was subsequently arrested and charged with driving under the influence.