Chief Judge Michael Thornsbury presided over the arraignments in Mingo County Circuit Court, setting trial dates, bonds and determining if the defendants had legal representation.
Mingo County Prosecuting Attorney C. Michael Sparks noted that the indictments were categorized as four property, four violent and three drug indictments. Four of the indictments remained sealed pending the arrest of the persons named with offenses including malicious assault and 11 counts of drug-related charges.
Sparks commended the grand jury for “tirelessly considering and returning a record number of indictments in 2009.”
Sparks said he decided to defer the lion’s share of drug indictments to the January 2010 term “due to the continuing success of the major drug investigation now being conducted by the West Virginia State Police and the Williamson Police Department.
#Thornsbury released the grand jury from further duty at this time but noted the panel is subject to recall at a later date.
Those indicted, their ages, addresses, charges against them, trial dates, bonds and attorneys are listed as follows.
– Donald Eugene Christian, 61, of Williamson, is charged with one count of attempting first degree murder, and one count of assault during an attempt to commit a felony. He is represented by Attorney Ronald J. Rumora.
Christian is alleged to have intentionally and feloniously attempted to murder his wife, Nancy Christian, by utilizing a firearm to shoot and wound her in the face, but “fell short of murdering Nancy Christian.”
The indictment also accuses Christian of assault during an attempt to commit a felony in the shooting and wounding of Nancy Christian on July 21, 2009.
Christian’s trial is set for Jan. 12, 2010 and he was remanded to Southwestern Regional Jail in lieu of $100,000 cash (full cash) bond.
#– James Douglas Fairchild, 57, Kermit, stands indicted on one count of first degree arson and one count of burglary. He is charged with feloniously setting fire to and burning a dwelling owned by Garfield Brewer on Aug. 12, 2009. A second count accuses him of burglarizing and breaking and entering Garfield Brewer’s dwelling with intent to commit a crime therein.
Fairchild’s trial is scheduled for Dec. 7, 2009 and his bond was set at $100,000. Attorney Jerry Lyall represents him.
– Alfred Joe Berry, 46, Gilbert, is scheduled for trial on Dec. 7, 2009 on two counts of fraudulent insurance claim. He is represented by Attorney Jerry Lyall and was remanded back to the regional jail with no bond permitted. He is currently serving a felony drug sentence.
His indictment charges him with fraudulently and feloniously submitting materially false statements in support of two claims pursuant to Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company policies of insurance.
One claim was for auto insurance, benefits or payment of $3,014.24 on Feb. 21, 2005, and the other claim was for mobile home insurance benefits or payment of $6,668.65 on Nov. 22, 2006.
– James Henry Ray Hinkle, 27, Delbarton, is charged with one count each of burglary, grand larceny, transferring stolen goods and firearm possession violation. Represented by Attorney Jonathan Jewell, he is slated for trial on Dec. 7, 2009. His bond is set at $26,000.
The first three offenses allegedly occurred on Sept. 21, 2008 when he feloniously broke into and entered Roy Wallace Tiller’s dwelling house with intent to commit larceny.
He then allegedly stole a Dell laptop computer valued at $1,500; a Mark IV Colt .45 pistol valued at $1,500; a Colt revolver, valued at $600; a Derringer pistol valued at $400; a Walther P22 pistol valued at $425, and a Charter Arms .38 revolver valued at $250, all of which was owned by Roy Wallace Tiller.
The third count of his indictment accuses him of feloniously transferring to Sarah Workman a Dell laptop computer valued at $1,500 and owned by Roy Wallace Tiller. Count IV charges Hinkle with felonious possession of firearms.
#– Virgil Lee Sipple, 64, Meador, was indicted on one count of malicious assault upon William Mullins on March 23, 2009, and two counts of wanton endangerment when he performed an act with a firearm.
Count II accuses him of creating a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury to William Mullins, and Count III levels the same charge of creating substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury to Timothy Butcher, Ernie Sipple and Charles Chafin, all on March 23, 2009.
Sipple is represented by Attorney Jane Moran and is under $35,000 bond. His trial date is Jan. 12, 2010.
Judge Thornsbury issued capiases for the arrest of Michael J. Baker, 37, Sidney, Ky., and Ethan May, 34, of Baisden.
Baker was indicted on five counts of forgery and five counts of uttering checks on the First National Bank of Williamson with intent to defraud City Tire Company; and one count of fraudulently and feloniously depriving City Tire Company of $37,451.78 by means of fraudulent pretenses May 12, 2008.
– Ethan May allegedly broke into and entered a vacated house owned by Tim Thompson on Sept. 21, 2009 with intent to commit a larceny therein. On the same date, he is charged with felonious attempt to take and carry away chattels owned by Tim Thompson and collectively valued at $1,000.
Sparks said conditions are attached to the bonds permitted by the court, including electronic home confinement, weekly random drug testing, no association with abusers of controlled substances, no firearms, and Judge’s work program.