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Defendants opt to avoid jury trials

Several defendants entered guilty pleas and avoided trialsMonday as both Judge Mike Smith and Judge Keith Starrett heldcircuit court sessions in Lincoln County.

In Smith’s court, two defendants opted to admit their crimesinstead of facing the jury. Both were scheduled for trialMonday.

“Y’all’s appearance today resulted in two guilty pleas,” thejudge told prospective jurors as he released them for the dayMonday morning. They were told to check with the circuit clerk’soffice regarding other possible trials later this week.

Christopher Maxwell, 32, of 930 Old Brook Road, pleaded guiltyto unlawful sale of crack cocaine. He is scheduled to be sentencednext Monday.

Jerry T. Doss, 24, of 1103 Brookway Boulevard, pleaded guilty tounlawful possession of cocaine and unlawful possession of marijuanacharges. Prosecutors amended his indictment to remove a “withintent to distribute” clause from the cocaine indictment.

Doss is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday.

One defendant, Samuel Boruvka, 23, of 424 Ohio St., Dallas,Texas, made appearances before both Smith and Starrett Monday. Hewas before Smith on a felony bad check charge and before Starretton a grand larceny charge.

Smith ordered Boruvka placed in the Regimented Inmate Disciplineprogram to earn probation. Starrett, whose order will be concurrentwith Smith’s, suspended a three-year year and ordered Boruvka toobtain alcohol and drug treatment and to pay $180 restitution.

Another defendant facing a trial Wednesday pleaded guilty Mondayafternoon.

Guy Williams, 26, of 307 East Minnesota St., pleaded guilty to aone felony and one misdemeanor count of receiving stolenproperty.

Williams was sentenced to a total of three years in prison andordered to serve the first year, with the remaining two suspendedfor four years post release supervision. He was also ordered to paya $1,000 fine and to obtain alcohol and drug treatment and hisGED.

“It’ll help you look out for yourself,” Smith told Williamsabout getting his GED.

Earlier Monday, based on his doctor’s request, Williams hadsought a 30-45 day continuance on his trial. Defense attorney JohnJackson said he was unable to confirm the request because thedoctor’s office was closed, and Smith viewed the request as a delaytactic.

“It’s late in the game for that,” Smith said.

In other court action, Arthur Miller, 21, of Southgate Trail,Bogue Chitto, was re-sentenced on unlawful sale of marijuana andpetit larceny charges. Court officials said Miller was too old fora juvenile drug and alcohol treatment program assigned to him inthe original sentence.

On Monday, Miller was sentenced to three years in prison andplaced in the RID program to earn probation. He was also ordered toobtain alcohol and drug treatment and to get his GED.

Third offense simple domestic violence charges against LebyronJones, 23, of 4140 Old Wesson Road Lot 52, are expected to bedropped after his wife appeared in court Monday. Like a DUI, athird offense simple domestic violence is considered a felony.

“We’re doing good, and I don’t want nothing to happen to him,”said Kimberly Jones, who was allegedly hit in the head with a brickin the incident that prompted the indictment.

Kimberly Jones said they had been married five years and areexpecting a child. Assistant District Attorney Diane Jones said thewife denied the brick incident and said she would not testify at atrial.

A felony bad check charge against Lebyron Jones remained on thedocket Monday.

In other circuit court activity, last week’s session of thegrand jury resulted in another 42 indictments.

According to the grand jury’s interim report on its Januaryterm, the panel heard from 30 witnesses, continued seven cases forfurther investigation, returned one case to a lower court forfurther disposition and voted not to issue an indictment in onecase. Grand jurors are in recess until April 16.

The names of those indicted are not made public until theaccused is served with copies of the court papers. Newly-indicteddefendants are scheduled to be arraigned April 7 before JudgeStarrett.