homepage logo

Judge Karl hears cases

By Staff | Apr 9, 2014

Several defendants appeared in Tyler County Circuit Court Thursday before Judge Mark A. Karl.

Damien E. Baker, 19, of Middlebourne appeared in court alongside his attorney, Kevin Neiswonger, for a preliminary probation revocation hearing.

At the hearing Neiswonger told the court there had been a plea agreement reached between the parties. He said Baker would plead guilty to violating his probation and serve the remainder of his original sentence and the state would not pursue the new charges. The only other condition would be that Baker make restitution in the amount of $385 to Witschey’s.

Baker had originally pleaded guilty in March 2013 to the felony offense of breaking and entering a building other than a dwelling and to two misdemeanor offenses of being an accessory after the fact, plus petit larceny.

On those charges he was sentenced to one to 10 years in the state Penitentiary for Men and six months for each misdemeanor charge, to be served in the North Central Regional Jail, all to run concurrently.

Baker pleaded guilty on Thursday to the probation violation which was a result of nine new charges being filed in magistrate court and then being transferred to circuit court. Judge Karl followed the recommendation of the plea agreement and revoked his probation and imposed the original sentence. He was also ordered to make the restitution of $385 to Witschey’s.

He was then remanded to the custody of the Division of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.

Timothy J. Channell, 49, of 3219 Braden Hill Road, Jacksonburg, was again in court for a possible plea or to set a trial date. He appeared alongside his attorney, John Gainer from the Public Defender Corporation.

Gainer told the court they have been unable so far to reach a plea and would like a set trial date. Judge Karl then set June 2 to begin the trial.

Channell is charged with with one felony count of malicious assault and one misdemeanor count of second offense domestic battery, both handed down in an indictment from the October 2013 grand jury. He remains free on bond and was ordered to stay in contact with his attorney and to return to court on June 2.

Tanya A Smith, 46, of Paden City, facing three felony counts of first degree arson and one misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals was in court on Thursday with her attorney, Gainer, for a possible plea.

Gainer told Karl he had recently received the plea offer and needed more time to go over it with his client. Karl set a return date of May 1. Smith was allowed to remain free on bond; she was told to stay in contact with her attorney.

The case of Matthew D. Witsoe, 25, of Rt. 1 Box 156-2 Beverly, W.Va., was passed until May 1, to allow for discovery to be filed and to work toward a plea agreement.

Witsoe was charged by the the grand jury for the felony offense of breaking and entering, felony offense of conspiracy to commit a crime against the state, and and two misdemeanor charges of destruction of property.

Witsoe was remanded back to jail and ordered to return May 1.

Judge Karl passed the case of Randy L. Kuehne, 43, of South Bloomfield, Ohio, until May 1. This was done to allow time for discovery and response.

Kuehne is charged with the felony offense of failure to meet an obligation to provide support to a minor. Kuehne was told to stay in contact with his attorney, Gainer, and return on May 1; he was allowed to remain free on bond.

Barbara A. Wells-Mease, 37, of 111 Jefferson Ave., Moundsville, W.Va., appeared for a preliminary probation revocation hearing.

Public Defender Gainer told the court he had not yet received notification of appointment as her counsel. Mease told Judge Karl she had not filled out the eligibility forms for court appointed representation. Karl instructed her to do so and then appointed Gainer as her attorney.

She is charged with violating her probation when she was arrested by the Moundsville police on Feb. 2 for domestic battery.

She was placed on probation in December 2011 after being sentenced to one to five years in prison for attempted delivery of a controlled substance.

On Thursday her case was passed to May 1, to allow more time for her attorney to receive information pertaining to the case.

She was ordered to fill out the eligibility forms and to return on May 1. She was remanded to jail.

Seth M. Morris, 25, of Middlebourne, appeared before Judge Karl for formal arraignment on an indictment handed down by the February 2014 grand jury.

Morris is charged with the felony offense of breaking and entering and for conspiring with Matthew Douglas Witsoe for the purpose of committing the felony offense of entering without breaking a building other than a dwelling.

He also is accused of two misdemeanor offenses of destruction of property.

Karl asked Morris if he was ready to enter a plea in the case and he answered, “No sir.”

At that point Public Defender Gainer said he had advised his client to stand silent and asked the court to enter a plea of innocence on his behalf.

Karl entered the plea and continued the case until May 1 for a possible plea and disposition.

Morris, who is on bond, was allowed to remain free with no objection from the state. He was ordered to stay in touch with his attorney.

Karl passed the case of Dewayne Andrew Nutting, 29, presently incarcerated, until May 1, to allow for further discovery.

Nutting is facing charges of felony offense of child abuse resulting in injury and a felony offense of malicious assault by kicking the victim in the abdomen with steel toed shoes.

He is also charged with domestic battery, a misdemeanor offense.

All charges are alleged to have occurred on Dec. 4, in Tyler County.

Nutting was ordered to return to court May 1; he was remanded to jail.