WILLIAMSON – With two temporary judges filling in for the suspended Mingo County Circuit Court Judge Mike Thornsbury, proceeding has continued in the courthouse this past week.
Mingo County Prosecuting Attorney Michael Sparks and his office took several guilty pleas this week.
Chad Nicholas Alley pleaded guilty to Attempt [Delivery of Scheduled II Controlled Substance - Oxycodone] in connection with Indictment A13-F104. Alley is exposed to a sentence of confinement in a state correctional facility for an indefinite term of not less than one year nor more than three years. Alley was represented by Attorney Joshua S. Ferrell.
John Lowe pleaded guilty to Attempt [Grand Larceny] in connection with Indictment A13-F96. Lowe is exposed to a sentence of confinement in a state correctional facility for an indefinite term of not less than 1 year nor more than three years. Lowe was represented by Attorney Joshua S. Ferrell.
Justin L. Wellman pleaded guilty to two counts of Soliciting a Minor via Computer in connection with Indictment A13-F101. Wellman is exposed to an aggregate sentence of not less than four years nor more than 20 years. Wellman is now adjudged as a sex offender subject to the registration requirements of the West Virginia Sex Offender Registration Act. Wellman was represented by Attorney W. Kent Varney.
“It is refreshing to get back to prosecuting cases. We have a considerable backlog of criminal cases that will keep us busy in the coming weeks,” Sparks said.
He expects more cases or pleas to be taken or heard this coming week.
Chief Justice Brent Benjamin appointed Senior Status Judge John L. Cummings of Cabell County to serve in Mingo County.
Senior Status Supreme Court Justice Thomas McHugh will help as needed to ensure abuse and neglect, domestic violence; juvenile and other emergency issues are handled without delay.
The West Virginia Supreme Court has suspended Judge Thornsbury and his law license.
The Mingo County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has obtained 72 felony case convictions in 2013.
(Kyle Lovern is the sports editor for the Williamson Daily News. Comments or story ideas can be sent to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org)