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Karl hears McMahon’s guilty plea in TC court

By Staff | Nov 19, 2014

Brock I. McMahon, 24, of West Main Street, Paden City, appeared in Tyler County Circuit Court before the Honorable Judge Mark A. Karl on Monday. and pleaded guilty to the felony offense of conspiracy to commit a crime against the state by conspiring with certain other individuals to manufacture methamphetamine.

McMahon, alongside his attorney Joseph Munoz, entered the plea as part of a plea agreement where the felony charge of possession of precursor with intent to manufacture methamphetamine was dismissed. The conspiracy charge occurred between October 2012 and September 2013.

During Monday’s hearing Judge Karl told McMahon that in order for the court to accept his guilty plea he would have to tell the court in his own words what he did which made him guilty of the crime. McMahon said he purchased Sudafed to give to Benjamin Davis, knowing he was going to use it to manufacture methamphetamine.

McMahon was indicted by the Tyler County grand jury in June 2014 on the charges as part of a 98-count indictment involving several individuals involved in the manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine.

Prosecutor D. Luke Furbee said the evidence he would have to present to the court, if the case were to proceed to trial, would be the pharmacy records which show McMahon had purchased precursor on at least three occasions. He would also introduce testimony from John VanCamp and possibly others involved in the case. After hearing McMahon’s testimony and Furbee’s evidence, Karl allowed the guilty plea to be entered into the record.

After asking McMahon a series of questions concerning his rights and his mental and physical condition, Judge Karl told him the recommendation of the state through the plea agreement is a sentence of one to five years in the custody of the commissioner of the division of corrections. He said the sentence would be served alternatively on home incarceration for a period of one to five years, subject to release on parole after he has successfully served one year. He would also be required to pay the cost of his prosecution, including court appointed attorney fees.

McMahon must comply with the terms and conditions of home incarceration. He must also agree to be completely truthful and forthright and cooperate with the state of West Virginia, by and through the Tyler County Prosecutor and Tyler County Sheriff Department. “You shall provide truthful information concerning drug trafficking and manufacturing in Tyler County,” said Karl. “You may also be required to submit and pass a polygraph examine.”

Judge Karl then imposed the sentence of one to five years in the custody of the commissioner of corrections. He allowed the sentence to be served through home confinement and gave him a strong warning about when he can be away from home. He was also directed to his probation officer and ordered to make arrangements to meet with her. McMahon was given 10 days to get a land phone and get hooked up.

In another matter, Joshua R. Smith, 29, of South Chelsea Street, Sistersville, appeared in court for further proceedings in his case charging him with the felony offense of conspiracy to commit an offense against the state and the felony offense of possession of precursor with intent to manufacture methamphetamine.

Smith was indicted on the charges by the June term of the grand jury. On Monday his attorney, Kevin Neiswonger, told the court a plea agreement has been reached but he would like to have more time before the hearing. Judge Karl set a return date of Dec. 4. Smith was told to stay in contact with his attorney and to return at that date. Without objection, he was allowed to remain on bond.

Richard D. Hooks, 40, of Rippentuck Road, Friendly, appeared in court alongside his attorney, Neiswonger, for further proceedings in his case charging him with third-offense DUI. Neiswonger told the court they have reached a plea agreement, but the problem is his client works and the agreement requires home confinement, which is not conducive to his work. He said they are at a stand still as to what to do.

Prosecutor Furbee said he has done all he can by law. He said in these cases he is limited to certain things and he just can’t offer any thing else. Judge Karl said he would give them another opportunity to resolve it before setting it for trial. He set a return date for Dec. 4.

Bond was allowed to continue and Hooks was told to return on Dec. 4.

Tracy A. Keller, 46, of Dodd Street, Middlebourne, was again in court for a possible plea. Keller is charged by the June grand jury for her alleged involvement in illegal drug activity in Tyler County. Her attorney, Jessica Myers, said a plea agreement has been reached but her client needs to see her specialist before the plea hearing. She said Keller has a scheduled appointment with the specialist on Dec. 4.

Karl set a return date for the plea hearing on Jan. 15, 2015. Keller was told to stay in contact with her attorney and to return at that time. Without objection, she was allowed to remain on bond.

Jeremy M. Keller, 35, of Third Street, Middlebourne, was in court on Monday for a possible plea in his case charging him by the Tyler County grand jury with the felony offense of conspiracy to commit an offense against the state and the felony offense of possession of precursor with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine.

Keller’s attorney, Eric Powell, told the court a plea agreement has been reached and is ready to be filed today. Judge Karl said there needed to be a pre-sentence report completed. He set Dec. 16 for the taking of the plea and ordered Keller to return on that date. He was allowed to remain on bond.