Braxton Citizens' News, Government

Circuit Court Holds Hearings

The Honorable Richard A. Facemire recently completed several court orders in the Braxton County Circuit Court. Braxton County Prosecuting Attorney Jasmine R.H. Morton represented the state during the court proceedings. Tyler Morlan and Mike Haley from the Braxton County Probation Office were present for some of the hearings.
On March 24, Stephen Eugene Cutlip appeared in court with his attorney David Karickhoff for a plea hearing. Both parties announced to the court a plea agreement had been reached. Cutlip entered a guilty plea to the felony offense of burglary. The state agreed to stand silent at the sentencing hearing and to dismiss other charges in the indictment.
Tanya Marie Conrad and her attorney Jonathan Fittro came before Judge Facemire for a plea hearing. A plea agreement had been reached between the state and the defendant. She entered a guilty plea to the felony charge of possession of fentanyl with intent to deliver. The state agreed to dismiss other charges and to remain silent at sentencing.
Judge Facemire accepted both plea agreements and set the sentencing hearings for May 5.
On March 16, Betsy Lynn Cogar and attorney David Karickhoff appeared in for her arraignment. The defendant entered a not guilty plea to the felony offenses of possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver, possession of fentanyl with intent to deliver, and conspiracy. Jury trial has been set for May 11.
Samuel Lee Donaldson, Jr. and his attorney Kevin Hughart came to court for his sentencing hearing. The defendant addressed the court and explained he did not want his attorney to speak as he did not believe his attorney would advocate for his best interest. He went on to say “everyone was trying to make him look bad.” The state recommended the sentence to run concurrent with any he is currently serving. The court found Donaldson in need of correctional treatment in a correctional setting based on his likelihood to re-offend, the deliberate nature of the offense, his anti-social attitude, prior criminal history, sporadic employment history, and the violent nature of this offense. On the felony count of strangulation, he was sentenced to one to five years in prison and it was ordered the sentence run consecutively to the one he is currently serving.
On February 15, Dennis Moyer Samples appeared before Judge Facemire with his attorney David Karickhoff for a jury trial. Once the jury selection was complete, witnesses for the state presented evidence to the court. The defense requested a direct verdict by the court as the state had failed to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The court denied the motion. Samples then testified on his own behalf. The jury then heard the closing arguments from both the state and the defense. The jury returned a guilty verdict on the felony offense of wanton endangerment with a firearm. Sentencing has been set for April 7.
On February 14, Kyra Candice Clark and her attorney David Karickhoff appeared in court for a probation revocation hearing. The state was represented by Special Prosecuting Attorney Jim E. Samples. After hearing evidence and testimony of witnesses, the court found the defendant in violation of the terms and conditions of her probation. The court also denied a motion to have Clark readmitted to probation. She was sentenced to one to ten years in the state penitentiary for the felony offense of receiving and transferring a stolen vehicle.