TAYLOR COUNTY—While the COVID pandemic carries on, many hearings are being held virtually. In addition to arraignments held in the Taylor County Circuit Courtroom recently, the Honorable Judge Alan D. Moats presided over numerous cases held via TEAMS.
A total of five cases were heard for defendants currently incarcerated in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail (TVRJ), two more for individuals housed in the North Central Regional Jail (NCRJ) and a final hearing was held remotely for an inmate in the Northern Regional Jail (NRJ).
Among the cases from the TVRJ was that of 49-year-old Clinton Keith Beavers, who was recently indicted by the grand jury for attempted grand larceny.
When it came time to address bond, Defense Attorney Greg Michaels reveled that a $10,000 bond had been set, but that his client was unable to post it.
“At the time of the crime, Mr. Beavers was under the influence. If the court sees fit to reduce his bond to a personal recognizance (PR) bond, the state would ask that he be placed on bond supervision through the Taylor County Community Corrections Program,” voiced Taylor County Prosecutor John Bord.
Beavers admitted to the court that prior to his incarceration, he had been using Suboxone, smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol.
“I don’t have an issue letting you out, but this certainly cannot keep happening,” Moats declared. “I will release you to Community Corrections for supervision, but all of this has to stop. I can’t allow you to endanger the community or yourself.”
With that, he ordered that a PR bond would be set for Beavers.
Additionally, Zachary Stevens, age 36, of Grafton, was present via TEAMS after being picked up on a felony escape warrant.
A motion was made for a revocation hearing to be held, and Moats ordered that Stevens would remain jailed until that hearing.
A bond hearing was also discussed for William J. Ward, who faced indictment for felony escape.
According to Bord, Ward had been directly indicted and bond had not been addressed. Moats ordered that the defendant would remain in the regional jail until that hearing.
Brian Marquis Knighten, age 38, of Waynesboro, MS, faced arraignment for two counts of wanton endangerment involving a firearm, persons prohibited from possessing firearms, unlawful assault and kidnapping.
According to Bord, the defendant, who was wanted in Mississippi for a parole violation, was facing additional charges by the state.
Previously a $20,000 cash only bond had been reduced to a $10,000 surety bond in May, however Knighten had not been able to make bond.
Moats ordered that his bond could continue.
Shane Allen Grow, age 40, of Grafton, rounded out the TVRJ cases, as he was arraigned on a felony escape charge.
Kenneth L. Riley, age 54, of Bridgeport, bit who is currently housed in the NCRJ, was arraigned on the charge of burglary, after being assigned counsel, Tyler Reseter, in his case.
It was revealed that the defendant was currently being held on a seven to 105 year term out of Harrison County, so bond was not an issue.
Another inmate at the NCRJ, Charles P. Martin, age 32, of Carolina, WV, was arraigned for fleeing in a vehicle from law enforcement, showing reckless indifference for the safety of others.
Martin is currently being held on a breaking and entering charge out of Marion County, but because his $30,000 bond set in Taylor County was never revoked, Moats ordered that I may continue.
Finally, an internet call was placed to the Northern Regional Jail to address 18-year-old Grafton resident Jeffrey Isaac Edward Davis’ arraignment for two counts of incest.
When addressing the matter of bond, his attorney Greg Michael shared that even if his client were able to post the $100,000 bond issued, he had nowhere to live.
Moats told Davis that if he could come up with a home plan, he would address a potential reduction in bond, however, until that time, his $100,000 bond stood.
During the arraignments, Moats entered not guilty pleas on behalf of the defendants, allowing their attorneys 30 days to obtain discovery and file motions in their cases.
All defendants are innocent until proven guilty, and each are awaiting hearings and trials for their alleged crimes.
A trial date of January 22, 2022, was set for all the above-mentioned cases.