Court hearing scheduled on parents’ failure to send kids to school PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 23 March 2017 15:05



A Scottsburg area couple has been ordered to appear in Scott Circuit Court on March 27 to answer to charges they have allowed their children to skip school.

According to the probable cause affidavit, the attendance of the three youngsters was reviewed by Scott School District 2 officials. The children’s attendance records were described as “substandard.”

Four letters regarding the problem were sent to Otis Bishop, 34, and Amanda Bishop, 36. The couple reportedly did not respond to any of the letters. They also did not attend a meeting scheduled by the Scott County Attendance Review Board in December so that the couple could talk to court and school officials and develop a plan to address the absences.

They were also warned that, if the children continued to miss school, the parents could be subjecting themselves to criminal prosecution.

According to the affidavit, all three children have continued to be absent.

Consequently, each parent has been charged with six counts of Class B misdemeanor violation of compulsory school attendance.




County Prosecutor’s Office announces recent sentencings for committed crimes PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 23 March 2017 15:04



Among those who were recent sentenced in Scott Circuit Court were two men, one of whom pleaded guilty to battery resulting in serious bodily injury, and a second for selling drugs, being an Habitual Offender and probation violation.

Charles Thomas Dentith of Louisville, Ky., was sentenced to three years on the Level 5 felony battery charge with the Indiana Department of Corrections. The plea agreement includes allowing Dentith 69 days of credit for time already served.

Dentith was a prisoner being held on other charges at the Scott County Security Center in 2016. He attacked a fellow inmate by coming up behind him and punching the man several times in the head. The man’s injuries included a broken orbital socket bone, which holds the eye in place.

“Inmates need to understand that laws still apply to them within jail walls,” stated Chris Owens, Scott County Prosecutor. “We do everything we can to enforce those laws and help the jail staff maintain a safe environment.”

Sheriff Dan McClain said that new equipment at the jail has helped his staff to respond to such incidents. When an incident occurs, we will work diligently with the Prosecutor’s Office to ensure inmate are held responsible for offenses they commit in our facility.”

A state petition to revoke probation was dismissed in the plea agreement, and Dentith was ordered to pay court costs.

The case was handled by Deputy Prosecutor Elizabeth Stigdon.

In another 2016 case, Robert Estep, 53, received a nine-year sentence for selling his wife’s medication to an undercover agent in the parking lot of Scott Memorial Hospital. The incident occurred last September.

“Mr. Estep sold drugs in our county, and he is now being held accountable for what he did. Any time a drug dealer is taken off the streets, our community gets better,” stated Prosecutor Owens. “This agreement assures that Mr. Estep won’t be selling drugs in our county for some time.”

Deputy Prosecutor Amanda Herald handled this case.

Check your card statements! Scott County residents among victims in apparent credit card fraud ring PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 23 March 2017 15:02


Four counts of Level 6 felony fraud and seven counts of Level 6 theft have been filed in Scott Circuit Court against a Florida man suspected of being part of a large credit card fraud ring operating in the Southern Indiana/Kentucky area was arrested in Scottsburg on Thursday, March 16.

Jose L. Rodriguez, 51, Miami, Fl., was arrested while pumping diesel fuel into a hidden tank on the vehicle he was driving. When placed in custody, Rodriguez apparently had identifications with addresses in Louisville, Jeffersonville and Florida.

Officers with the Scottsburg Police Department and Sheriff’s Department began working on the case around March 13 after several local merchants and residents reported the use of false credit cards at gas pumps and convenience stores. Cards used at the pumps reflected the information of other individuals.

As Detective/Sgt. Steven Herald began studying the cases, he noticed cards were being used at gas stations which have no operating surveillance cameras in this county and other communities.

The fraudulent cards were being used to buy diesel fuel. Det. Herald contacted local stations and asked them to instruct their personnel to be watchful for possible suspicious behavior involving such sales.

Thanks to an alert manager at the Casey’s gas station at the corner of West Lake and U.S. Highway 31 South in Scottsburg, a suspect was located just three days later.

When the manager reported that a man had made a maximum purchase of diesel fuel on one card and was continuing to pump diesel fuel using another card, Det. Herald and Patrolman Trevis Burr made a visit to the station and began talking to the man, later identified as Rodriguez. The numbers on the cards presented to them by Rodriguez did not match the numbers of accounts being charged for the fuel.

Rodriguez had a total of 27 prepaid cards in his possession. All had been “switched” to the billing information of 13 individuals. At least three of those victims are local residents. According to the case’s charging information, cards were “prepaid” in the amount of $750.

At his initial hearing in court on Tuesday, March 21, Rodriguez identified himself as a Cuban national. Judge Jason Mount told the man that if there is a criminal conviction in his case, he could be deported.

A jury trial was scheduled for June 6. Rodriguez said he planned to hire an attorney. Bail is set at $10,000 full cash.

Scottsburg police believe the incident is a part of a larger ring of credit card thefts. The U.S. Secret Service has been contacted regarding the investigation.

Anyone with recent fraudulent charges on their credit or debit cards that appear to be for gas or diesel purchases is urged to contact a local law enforcement agency. Multiple charges against Rodriguez in connection with credit card fraud are now pending.

Scottsburg residents may call the police department at 812-752-4462 or remain anonymous by calling 812-752-2333. The Sheriff’s Department can be reached by calling 812-752-8400 or its Tip Line at 812-752-7898. The Austin Police Department’s line is 812-794-4623. All tip lines are in operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.


State police, Crothersville officer locate, stop suspect car on I-65; three arrested PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 23 March 2017 15:00



An Indiana State trooper and a Crothersville police officer combined efforts Thursday, March 16, to stop a car reported to have been driving erratically on Interstate 65.

The ultimate result of their efforts was the arrest of three people, all from Kentucky.

Taken into custody were Lige Baker, 42, Hazard, Ky.; Brandy M. Carroll, 48, Viper, Ky.; and Sherry Gayle Fields, no age available, Combs, Ky.

According to the probable cause affidavit prepared by Indiana State Police (ISP) Trooper Tia Deaton, The trio was in a small white car being driven south on the interstate. A 9-1-1 call from a motorist near the 49 mile marker in Jackson County related that the car had nearly hit a guardrail twice and “…was all over the roadway.”

That information put Crothersville police on alert as well as Trp. Deaton, who was in her patrol car near the 36 mile marker. The officer works out of the Versailles ISP post. Crothersville Officer J.L. McElfresh advised he was near the on-ramp, waiting for the car to pass. When it did, he pulled in back of it. Trp. Deaton followed to observe the car, reporting that it made unsafe lane movements at the 33 and 32.5 mile markers, once nearly striking a semi-tractor-trailer.

She stopped the car near the 31.5 mile marker, with Officer McElfresh assisting.

None of the three were wearing seatbelts. Fields was behind the wheel. She failed field sobriety testing and fell asleep in the trooper’s patrol car.

Before she did, however, Fields allegedly offered information about both Baker and Carroll dealing drugs and that she and Baker had been involved in a case investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

By this time, K-9 Deputy James R. Ward had arrived to assist. After reading Baker his rights, Trp. Deaton said the man readily admitted to having Xanax pills stuffed in a sock. He also had $1,331 in cash, the officer noted. More information allegedly obtained from Carroll related that the trio had been to Illinois, where they had obtained the Xanax pills as well as Methadone. Fields had apparently taken Xanax. Officers eventually discovered she had $480 in cash.

Fields was transported to Scott Memorial Hospital for evaluation. The two men were taken to the Scott County Security Center in Scottsburg. Around 80 Methadone pills and a like number of Xanax were seized as were the money and the car.

All of the suspects were placed on a 72-hour hold. They each appeared before Scott Circuit Court Judge Jason Mount on Tuesday morning, March 21, for initial hearings.

Charges against Baker include Level 6 possession of a narcotic drug and misdemeanor counts of possession of a controlled substance and visiting a common nuisance. Fields was charged with Level 6 felony maintaining a common nuisance, and misdemeanor counts of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and operating a motor vehicle with a controlled substance in the body. She was also charged with unsafe lane movement and not wearing a seatbelt, both infractions.

Carroll was charged with misdemeanor visiting a common nuisance.

Preliminary not guilty pleas were entered for all three, and Carroll has a bench trial set June 6. His bail was reduced from its original $5,000 by corporate surety bond or $500 cash to $3,000/$300.

Baker and Fields were each assigned an initial trial date of June 6 as well. Bail in both cases is $15,000 by surety bond or $1,500 cash. Both cases were assigned to public defenders. Fields’ driver license was automatically suspended.

Officers dispatched to investigate 9-1-1 ‘hang-up’ break up apparent drug house PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 23 March 2017 14:59


When two Scottsburg officers were sent to a home near Scottsburg Elementary School on Thursday night, March 16, their mission was to investigate a 9-1-1 “hang-up.”

County dispatchers had earlier reported receiving a call through the 9-1-1 system where the caller apparently hung up. Patrolmen Troy Ford and Shawn Hurt were sent to the residence of Ronald L. Broadus, 44, at 86 North Hyland Street at 11:49 p.m.

When they pulled in the driveway of the small one-story home, they were met by a man getting out of a pickup truck parked in the drive. He was identified as Michael Lee Weston.

Weston offered to go get Broadus. Accompanied by Weston, the officers walked around the north side of the house to approach the front door. The door opened, Ptl. Ford stated in his probable cause affidavit, and a man walked out with “…a large butcher knife in his hand.”

The man, later identified as Brent J. Baker, dropped the knife when he saw Ptl. Ford and attempted to shut the door but was stopped by the officers.

Ptl. Ford said that, while he was retrieving the dropped knife just inside the door, he saw a syringe laying on a nearby table. He said he saw more syringes, a spoon covered in residue and several plastic baggies laying on a kitchen table ten feet away from the door. Broadus was in the kitchen along with two younger men, identified as Alfred Alex Riley and Joshua Riley.

Those three were taken outside, and Ptl. Ford told Broadus their purpose for being at his home, the 9-1-1 call. He said Broadus explained that the call must have been a “pocket dial.”

Broadus offered to take Ford through the house. The officer said he saw a used Narcan nasal spray container on a living room table. Asked who had overdosed, Broadus told him no one had.

Once Deputies James Shelton, Jac Sanders and James Ward arrived on the scene to assist, the five men were asked for cards proving they participated in the county’s needle exchange program and so could legally have syringes in their possession. None were produced.

Alex Riley allegedly told the officers that he would “…take the hit…” if illegal substances were found in the home. He further identified the coating on the spoon as heroin.

After Broadus signed a consent to search form, Ptl. Ford reported that two baggies with white residue and a digital scales were found in Broadus’ bedroom. Residue on another spoon in the kitchen also proved to be heroin.

Broadus was charged with three Level 6 felonies – unlawful possession of a syringe, possession of a narcotic drug and maintaining a common nuisance. He is being held in lieu of a higher-than-standard bond of $30,000 by corporate surety bond or $3,000 cash.

His friends are also in trouble. Baker, 28, Austin; Alex Riley, 23, Scottsburg; and Joshua Riley, 22, Seymour, are all charged with Level 6 felony unlawful possession of a syringe and possession of a narcotic drug and a misdemeanor charge of visiting a common nuisance.

In addition, petitions for detainer were filed against Baker and Alex Riley. Both are being held for 15 days without bond. Bail for each was set at $20,000 by surety bond or $2,000 cash. The initial jury trial date for Broadus, Joshua Riley and Baker is June 6. Because Alex Riley requested a speedy trial, his initial trial date is May 16. Joshua Riley’s bail is set at $15,000 by surety bond or $1,500 cash.

All three and Broadus were scheduled to revisit Circuit Court on Friday, March 24, to determine if they needed the services of public defenders.

Michael Weston, Scottsburg, is being held on a probation violation, according to the probable cause affidavit.




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