KY SEAL 2
Sanders

From the Office of:

ROB SANDERS
COMMONWEALTH'S ATTORNEY
16th Judicial Circuit - Kenton County, KY 

 

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This Week in Kenton Circuit Court...
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Issue #216March 30, 2012
Greetings Kenton County!
 
The men and women of the Commonwealth's Attorney Office are always working hard to keep Kenton County safe.  This newsletter is intended to keep all interested parties up to date on the latest in prosecution and law enforcement news.  If you have any questions or would like additional information about the cases you see in this email, please call (859) 292-6580 or email the Commonwealth's Attorney Office at robsanders@kentonprosecutor.com .
 
Guilty Verdict
Commonwealth v. Willie Williams IIIWillie Williams
Judge: Summe 
Prosecutor: Rob Sanders/Josh McIntosh* 
Police: Ft. Mitchell

On July 3, 2011 a resident of Cambridge Ave in Ft. Mitchell came home early from a family vacation to tend to a sick relative.  She was alarmed to find the family's safe on the floor of the garage instead of its installed location on the upper floor of the residence.  Not knowing if a burglar was still in the house, the woman wisely backed out and called police.  Ft. Mitchell Police Officers Shane Best, Erica Schrand, and Bill Zerhusen responded to the call.  The officers determined the burglar was long gone but found the master bedroom and closets ransacked.  Entry was made by breaking glass in a side door to gain access to the lock.  The burglar had gone thru all the bedroom drawers and closets.  Many valuables were disturbed but left behind, however, two heirloom quality watches were missing.

As Ft. Mitchell Police processed the crime scene, they noticed the house had a security system with video cameras.  The homeowners had not armed the system before leaving because of recent malfunctions with the fire alarm.  Captured on the video cameras was a tall, black male that appeared to be some sort of salesman but was seen walking all around the house over the course of almost 2 hours, two days prior on July 1, 2011.  Although the broken door is not visible on camera, the man can be seen leaving the front door, then returning into the house twenty minutes later thru the same front door.

Unbeknown to Ft. Mitchell Police, the Ft. Thomas Police were investigating an attempted burglary in their city that occurred July 1, 2011.  Their suspect also made entry thru a rear door of a home that appeared unoccupied but the homeowner was actually upstairs.  When confronted by the homeowner, the tall, black man claimed to be a salesman.  He was carrying a case with papers and wearing a name tag.  When the owner went to call police, the man hurried to his car parked on the street.  An alert neighbor saw the man, thought him suspicious, and recorded his license plate.  Upon later learning of the break-in attempt, she provided the license plate number to Ft. Thomas Police.

The car was registered to a man in Edgewood, KY.  Ft. Thomas Police Detectives Brad Adams and Brent Moening went looking for the owner at his home.  Upon receiving no answer, the detectives stopped in at Adams' former employer, the Ft. Mitchell Police, to see if anyone wanted to get lunch.  To Adams surprise, Ft. Mitchell Detective Tim Berwanger had a still photo from the video cameras up on his computer and the man in the video matched the description of his suspect perfectly.  Upon inquiring about the video, the detectives quickly learned the two departments were hunting the same suspect.

Detectives tracked down the car owner who said the car was driven by his daughter who lives in Newport.  They also learned the daughter was living with a man named Willie Williams, who fit the description of the burglar.  Detectives also learned Williams was, in fact, employed as a salesman for the company he claimed to represent in Ft. Thomas, however, company officials informed them their salesmen should never be going door to door in a residential neighborhood and that Williams was not at work on the day of the burglaries.  When the detectives found Williams in Newport, they also located his clothes seen in the video and his company ID he was wearing.  Williams was arrested and taken in for questioning.  After first claiming to be at work on the day of the burglary, Williams eventually admitted that he was, in fact, the man seen in the video and that he also was the man confronted by the homeowner in Ft. Thomas.  But Williams emphatically denied both burglaries.

Williams was indicted for 2nd Degree Burglary by the Kenton County Grand Jury in September, 2011.  After two continuances at the defense's request, the case was called for trial on March 28, 2012 before Kenton Circuit Judge Patricia Summe.  Commonwealth's Attorney Rob Sanders and Special Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Josh McIntosh called eight witnesses for the prosecution, including Ft. Mitchell and Ft. Thomas Police and the homeowners from the respective cities as well.  In addition, two witnesses from the Defendant's now-former employer testified about his absence from work and violation of company policy against residential solicitations.  The defense called no witnesses and put on no proof. 

After approximately three hours of deliberation over lunch, the jury returned a verdict finding Williams guilty of 2nd Degree Burglary.  After additional proof about a prior burglary conviction out of Georgia, the jury also convicted Williams of being a Persistent Felony Offender 2nd Degree.  The jury also recommended that Williams serve 15 years in prison.  Formal final sentencing was set for May 8, 2012.  To read more about the case, click here.

*Special Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Josh McIntosh is a 3rd year law student at Salmon P. Chase College of Law, practicing on a "limited license" under the supervision of the Commonwealth's Attorney.  Josh joins the ranks of over a dozen law student externs who have won felony jury verdicts of guilty while practicing law with the Commonwealth's Attorney Office in Kenton County.
 

Guilty Pleas & Sentencing

Commonwealth v. Russell BowmanRussell Bowman
Judge: Bartlett

Prosecutor: Corey Plybon
Police Agency: Covington

  

On 3/26/12 Bowman pled guilty to Burglary 3rd Degree. Bowman faces 1-5 years in prison at sentencing. Final sentencing is set for 4/30/12.

Commonwealth v. Telicisha Knox
Judge: Sheehan
Telichisha Knox
Prosecutor: Megan Mersch
Police Agency: Covington

  

On 3/26/12 Knox pled guilty to Burglary 3rd Degree. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Megan Mersch is recommending a 2 year prison sentence. Final sentencing is set for 4/23/12.

Commonwealth v. Richard Barnes Jr.Richard Barnes Jr.
Judge: Sheehan 
Prosecutor: Megan Mersch
Police Agency: Independence

On 3/26/12 Barnes pled guilty to Theft (>$500). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney  Megan Mersch is recommending a 2 1/2 year prison sentence. Final sentencing is set for 4/23/12.

  

Commonwealth v. Katherine McCoyKatherine McCoy
 Judge: Sheehan 
Prosecutor: Leanne Beck
Police Agency: Ft. Wright

On 3/26/12 McCoy pled guilty to Theft (>$500). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney  Leanne Beck is recommending a sentence of 5 years probated for 5 years. Final sentencing is set for 4/23/12.

  

Commonwealth v.  Bryce House   

Judge: SummeBryce House

Prosecutor: Casey Burns   

Police Agency: Erlanger  

  

On 3/26/12 House pled guilty to Wanton Endangerment and Possession of a Controlled Substance (unspecified). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Casey Burns is recommending that House, who has no felony record, be ordered into the felony diversion program for 3 years. Final sentencing is set for 5/8/12.

  

Commonwealth v.  James Simmons James Simmons

Judge: Summe

Prosecutor: Leanne Beck 

Police Agency: Erlanger

  

On 3/26/12 Simmons pled guilty to Burglary 2nd Degree. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Leanne Beck is recommending a 5 year prison sentence. Final sentencing is set for 5/22/12.  

  

Commonwealth v. Ricky Lewis Jr. Ricky Lewis Jr.
Judge: Summe
Prosecutor: Leanne Beck
Police Agency: Covington  

  

On 3/26/12 Lewis pled guilty to Burglary 2nd Degree. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Leanne Beck is recommending a 6 year prison sentence. Final sentencing is set for 5/8/12.

Commonwealth v. Heather Willis    Heather Willis
Judge: Summe 
Prosecutor: Leanne Beck
Police Agency: Covington  

  

On 3/26/12 Willis pled guilty to Receiving Stolen Property (>$500).  Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Leanne Beck is recommending a sentence of 3 years probated for 3 years. Final sentencing is set for 5/8/12.

Commonwealth v. Steve Grimm  
Judge: SummeSteve Grimm
Prosecutor: Noah Wentz
Police Agency: Covington

  

On 3/26/12 Grimm pled guilty to Possession of a Controlled Substance (cocaine).  Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Noah Wentz is recommending a 1 1/2 year prison sentence.. Final sentencing is set for 5/8/12.
   
Commonwealth v. Larry SchellLarry Schell
Judge: Summe
Prosecutor: Noah Wentz
Police Agency: Ludlow

On 3/30/12 Schell pled guilty to Burglary 2nd Degree. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Noah Wentz recommended a 10 year prison sentence. On 3/30/12 Schell was sentenced to 10 years to serve. 
 

Commonwealth v. Joshua Morris  

Judge: SummeJoshua Morris

Prosecutor: Joseph Meadows    

Police Agency: Ft. Mitchell 

  

On 2/27/12 Morris pled guilty to Possession of a Controlled Substance (oxycodone). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Joe Meadows recommended a sentence of 2 years probated for 2 years. On 3/27/12 Morris was sentenced to 2 years probated for 2 years. 

  

Commonwealth v. Willie Tirey    
Judge: SummeWillie Tirey
Prosecutor: James Redwine
Police Agency: Taylor Mill

On 2/13/12 Tirey pled guilty to Wanton Endangerment. 1st Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Jim Redwine recommended that Tirey, who has no felony record, be ordered into the felony diversion program for 5 years. On 3/27/12 Tirey was ordered into the felony diversion program for 5 years.  

  

Commonwealth v. Rodney BrownfieldRodney Brownfield  
Judge: Summe 
Prosecutor: Noah Wentz
Po
lice Agency: Kenton Co. Sheriff

On 2/13/12 Brownfield pled guilty to 2 counts of Wanton Endangerment and Fleeing and Evading Police. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Noah Wentz recommended a 2 year prison sentence. On 3/27/12 Brownfield was sentenced to 2 years in prison.  

  

Commonwealth v. Joshua StephensonJoshua Stephenson 

Judge: Bartlett 

Prosecutor: Leanne Beck   

Police Agency: Covington

 

On 3/15/12 Stephenson pled guilty to 2 counts of Burglary 3rd Degree. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Leanne Beck recommended a 3 year prison sentence. On 3/26/12 Stephenson was sentenced to 3 years in prison consecutive to other cases.   

 

Commonwealth v. Jamie Holt  

Judge: BartlettJamie Holt

Prosecutor: Joseph Meadows  

Police Agency: Covington

 

On 2/16/12 Holt pled guilty to Possession of a Controlled Substance (heroin). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Joe Meadows recommended a sentence of 3 years probated for 3 years. On 3/26/12 Holt was sentenced to 3 years probated for 3 years.

  

Commonwealth v. James WilloughbyJames Willouby 

Judge: Bartlett

Prosecutor: Casey Burns  

Police Agency: NKY Drug Strike Force 

 

On 2/6/12 a jury found Willoughby guilty of Manufacturing Methamphetamine and Possession of a Controlled Substance (unspecified). A jury recommended a 10 year prison sentence. On 3/26/12 Willoughby was sentenced to 10 years in prison. 


Commonwealth v. Christina Cole  

Judge: BartlettChristina Cole

Prosecutor: Joseph Meadows  

Police Agency: Kenton Co. Police 

 

On 2/16/12 Cole pled guilty to Possession of a Controlled Substance (heroin). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Joe Meadows recommended a 3 year prison sentence. On 3/26/12 Cole was sentenced to 3 years in prison. 


Commonwealth v. Lawrence Hall  

Judge: BartlettLawrence Hall

Prosecutor: Howard Tankersley  

Police Agency: Kenton Co. Child Support 

 

On 2/2/12 Hall pled guilty to Flagrant Non Support. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Howard Tankersley recommended that Hall, who has no felony record, be ordered into the felony diversion program for 5 years. On 3/26/12 Hall was ordered into the felony diversion program for 5 years. 


Commonwealth v. Michael Duffy  

Judge: Sheehan

Prosecutor: Megan Mersch Michael Duffy

Police Agency: Ft. Wright 

 

On 2/27/12 Duffy pled guilty to Theft of Identity. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Megan Mersch recommended that Duffy, who has no felony record, be ordered into the felony diversion program for 4 years. On 3/26/12 Duffy was ordered into the felony diversion program for 3 years. 


Commonwealth v. Jeffrey Bentz  

Judge: SheehanJeffrey Bentz

Prosecutor: Joseph Meadows  

Police Agency: Lakeside/Crestview Hills 

 

On 2/27/12 Bentz led guilty to Possession of a Controlled Substance (methadone). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Joe Meadows recommended a sentence of 1 1/2 years probated for 3 years. On 3/26/12 Bentz was sentenced to 1 1/2 years probated for 3 years.


Commonwealth v. Cody Johnson  

Judge:SheehanCody Johnson

Prosecutor: Megan Mersch 

Police Agency: Covington

 

On 2/27/12 Johnson pled guilty to 2 counts of Criminal Mischief. Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Megan Mersch recommended a sentence of 1 1/2 years probated for 3 years. On 3/26/12 Johnson was sentenced to 1 1/2 years probated for 3 years.


Commonwealth v. Austin LawAustin Law 

Judge: Sheehan

Prosecutor: Noah Wentz 

Police Agency: Kenton Co. Police 

 

On 2/27/12 Law pled guilty to Receiving Stolen Property (>$500). Asst. Commonwealth's Attorney Noah Wentz recommended that Law, who has no felony record, be ordered into the felony diversion program for 3 years. On 3/26/12 Law was ordered into the felony diversion program for 3 years.



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Thank you for taking the time to stay informed about criminal justice in Kenton County.   
 
Sincerely,
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Rob Sanders
Commonwealth's Attorney Office

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