Circuit Court

The following hearings were held in January in Pocahontas County Circuit Court before the Honorable Judge Robert E. Richardson:

A hearing on a petition to expunge the records of Farrell Kelly, 58, of Marlinton, was held January 13, wherein an investigation report was tendered to the court by the probation department. The court read the report to Mr. Kelly concerning the convicted charges. The court will mail the report to the prosecutor and to Mr. Kelly, who was given two weeks from the date of the hearing to file a response.

A pre-trial status conference was held in the case the State vs Richard Lee Moore, 47, of Marlinton, wherein defense counsel related that the defendant had pleaded guilty in Magistrate Court without the benefit of counsel. Current counsel asked the court to allow withdrawal of the plea and remand the matter back to Magistrate Court, where the defendant will have legal representation. The state noted that the appeal was not filed in the time frame of 20 days, but did not contest the issue for good cause. The court granted a motion to dismiss without prejudice as to the appeal.

A change of plea hearing is set for February 8 in the case the State vs Jody Wright, 29, an inmate in the Huttonsville Correctional Center.

A change of plea hearing is set for February 25 in the case the State vs Lynn Jordan, Jr., 32, of Cass.

The court found probable cause that Phillip C. Dean, Jr. 47, of Marlinton, violated one or more terms of his bond. An evidentiary hearing is set for January 29.

Hearings before the Honorable Judge Jennifer P. Dent:

Amanda Katherine Bre-wer-Long, 39, of Hillsboro, waived her right to an evidentiary hearing, and admitted to allegations in the petition to revoke her bond. The defendant has completed a 28-day rehab program. The court extended her probation to June 2025.

Based on a competency evaluation report, the court finds Gary McKenney, 70, of Marlinton, competent to stand trial and aware of the wrongfulness of his conduct as to criminal responsibility. The defendant has been referred to the Drug Court Program, but has to be assessed for entry. A status hearing is set for March 3.

Following a competency evaluation, the court determined that Eric Dakota Castle, 21, of Princeton, is competent to stand trial and is aware of his conduct as to criminal responsibility. A status conference is set for March 3.

An extradition hearing was held in the case the State vs Robert John Taylor, 34, of McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania, an inmate at Denmar Correctional Center. The defendant waived his right to the hearing and is willing to return to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to answer the charges pending against him there. Pennsylvania authorities are directed to pick up the defendant prior to January 31.

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