According to Pocahontas County Clerk Connie Carr, the following cases were heard March 1 before the Honorable Judge Jennifer P. Dent:
A pretrial conference was held in the case the State vs Aaron Joseph Bussard, 24, of Marlinton, wherein the court was advised that issues regarding fingerprinting had been resolved, and the DNA testing has been accomplished and transmitted to the crime lab. Defense and state agreed that neither side is ready to go to trial. Bussard waived his right to a speedy trial, and the matter is set for trial July 17. Bussard is charged with Two Counts, First Degree Murder; One Count, Grand Larceny; Two Counts, Concealment of a Deceased Body; Two Counts, Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards; One Count, Fraudulent Schemes.
A continuance of trial was granted in the case the State vs Kenton A. Combs, 57, of Marlinton. Combs waived his right to a speedy trial and the three term rule. Pretrial conference is set for April 19. Combs is charged with Nine Counts, Obstructing Firefighter or Emergency Equipment; One Count, Failure to Extinguish. The defendant remains on present bond.
Plea negotiations are in the works in the case the State vs Earl Ray Adkins, Jr. 47, of Hillsboro. Adkins is charged with One Count, Failure to Register as a Sex Offender, and One Count, DUI, Second Offense. He remains on present bond.
A sentencing and disposition hearing was held in the case the State vs Stephen L. James, 39, of Roanoke, Virginia, wherein the court denied defense counsel’s motion for probation. Counsel advised the court that the defendant has a detainer in the Commonwealth of Virginia and would be incarcerated there. James was sentenced to not less than one year and not more than 10 years in the state penitentiary, and was assessed $1,365.64 in costs and restitution.
A continuance of trial was granted in the case the State vs David F. Darrow, 61, of Mason City, Iowa. Darrow is charged with One Count, Obtaining Money by False Pretenses, and One Count, Fraudulent Schemes.
Joshua T. Stuart, 19, of Hillsboro, was placed on a diversion program for six months. Stuart is charged with Two Counts, Wanton Endangerment, and One Count, Destruction of Property. He remains on bond.
Kenneth R. Peck, Jr., 40, of Arbovale, did not appear at a pretrial conference as he was extradited to the Commonwealth of Virginia due to revocation of probation. Defense counsel advised the court that Peck would return to this jurisdiction as soon as his revocation hearing is held in Virginia. Peck is charged with One Count, Grand Larceny; One Count, Burglary; and One Count, Conspiracy to Commit a Felony.
Defense counsel advised the court that a plea has been negotiated in the case the State vs Herold Timmy Garretson, 38, of Stafford, Virginia. Garretson is charged with One Count, Murder.
A pretrial conference was held in the case the State vs Lew Means, 59, of Bartow, wherein defense counsel advised the court that the defendant had been referred to drug court. Means is charged with One Count, Possession of a Schedule II Controlled Narcotic Substance, and One Count, Possession of a Schedule III Controlled Narcotic Substance.