SIDNEY – The attorney set to defend the Sidney woman charged with involuntary manslaughter has been dismissed by his own request. A conflict of interest was cited that would result in unfair representation, according to online court records.
Also, the court ordered a Sidney man held without bond for violating a protection order; and, ruled on a probation violator who admitting using drugs just days after being placed on community control.
On Wednesday, Andrew Venters of the Shelby County Public Defender’s Office was removed as the attorney representing Kayla D. Hewitt, 33, who is facing several felony charges related to drugs and the death of a Sidney man.
Venters indicated the public defender’s office will also be representing another person who will be called as a witness in Hewitt’s combined trials on March 13. He indicated this would be a conflict of interest and asked the court to dismiss the office from handling her case.
Judge James Stevenson then appointed Sidney attorney Ralph Bauer to serve as Hewitt’s counsel. Hewitt remains incarcerated at the Shelby County Jail on a $50,000, 10 percent cash or surety bond.
Previously, Hewitt enter a not guilty plea to charges of involuntary manslaughter, a first-degree felony, regarding the death of David Lee Slagle. According to court records, Slagle died just hours after allegedly purchasing the tablet from Hewitt on Aug. 5.
In addition to the manslaughter charge, she is also charged with two counts of aggravated possession of drugs, and one count of possession of criminal tools, all fifth-degree felonies, in the same case. Those charges stemmed from a Feb. 6 drug-related arrest.
In a separate case, Hewitt is charged with aggravated possession of drugs, and possession of criminal tools, both fifth-degree felonies. Those charges stemmed from a Aug. 7 drug-related arrest just two days after Slagle’s death.
On Nov. 16, the Shelby County grand jury indicted Hewitt for her alleged involvement in the drug overdose death. When authorities were unable to locate Hewitt, a warrant was issued for her arrest when she failed to appear for a court appearance. On Dec. 17, Sidney Police arrested Hewitt, who was considered on the run from prosecution.
In other cases:
• Jeffery McMahan, 51, 847 Fielding Road, was ordered back to the county jail and held without bond for a probation violation. He is accused of violating a protection order of not contacting the victim on a previous conviction. Court records indicate McMahan accessed a social media account violating the agreement for him to receive five years of community control.
The court also ruled McMahan is competent to stand trial in two separate bond hearing cases involving the protection order violation along with a perjury conviction.
He remains incarcerated at the county jail.
• Michael T. Stotler, 27, incarcerated, was also ordered back to the county jail on a probation violation on a forgery conviction. He was sentenced on Dec. 20, and admitted to his probation officer he used drugs on Dec. 23.
He was ordered to participate in the Western Ohio Regional Treatment and Habilitation Center program in Lima.
• Jesse James Yates, 27, 414 S. Miami Ave. Apt. A, was placed on a $5,000 bond when his bond was revoked. He had been placed on probation for a conviction on theft and possession of criminal tools charges, both fifth-degree felonies.
• Roger Young, 23, 219 ½ S. Wilkinson Ave., had his bond revoked due to probation violations on a charge of attempted possession of drugs, a first-degree misdemeanor. Court records indicate Young overdosed on heroin on Dec. 16 and needed Narcan to be revived; and, he failed to complete a drug and alcohol assessment.
He was ordered to participate in the Vivitrol program, and placed back on probation.
• Erica Marjorie Karbowski, 20, Hamtramck, Michigan, possession of drugs, a fifth-degree felony. She failed to appear for sentencing on Dec. 27. Her $2,500 bond was revoked and a warrant for her arrest was issued.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.