SIDNEY – A plea agreement was reached Monday in Shelby County Common Pleas Court when a Sidney man agreed to enter a guilty plea in a case where he allegedly imprisoned and physically assaulted a 29-year-old woman at his residence.
David E. Whitt, 42, 519 N. West Ave., pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted kidnapping, a third-degree felony. He faces a maximum prison sentence of three years and a $10,000 fine. No sentencing date has been set.
Prosecutors reached the agreement with Whitt during a status conference. He was declared guilty by Judge James Stevenson.
On Dec. 7, Whitt was indicted by the Shelby County grand jury, charged with kidnapping, a second-degree felony. According to online court records, the woman entered Whitt’s home around 9 p.m., Dec. 2. Authorities claim Whitt later detained her from leaving the residence to “terrorize and inflict serious physical harm” upon her.
Sidney Police Capt. Jerry Tangeman reported the woman, who is Whitt’s ex-girlfriend, went to the residence for Whitt’s birthday. Over the course of the evening, he said an argument ensued between the two over “jealousy issues,” resulting in Whitt’s allegedly assaulting the woman.
At one point, the woman tried to escape through a second-story window, Tangeman said, but Whitt caught her and dragged her back inside. The next morning, Whitt drove the woman home. After arriving home, she then went to the Sidney Police Department at 10:12 a.m. The online court report notes the woman had sustained visible injuries when she was punched and choked.
Other court cases ruled upon, some with no sentencing dates set, included:
• Jeffery Lee Eichelberger, 33, incarcerated, was sentenced to 11 months with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (ODRC) on an amended charge of possession of criminal tools, a fifth-degree felony. The plea agreement was reached during a status conference Monday.
Eichelberger was arrested on Sept. 17, with material to package Fentanyl and heroin. The sentence will run concurrent with the prison term he is now serving.
• Mitchell D. Hudson, 44, 704 Park St., entered a guilty plea to an amended charge of possession of drugs, a second-degree felony, during his final pretrial hearing. He faces a maximum sentence of eight years with the ODRC and a $15,000 fine.
Hudson was arrested on May 15 at the dead end of Sixth Avenue when discovered with drugs and ran from police.
• Steven J. Tobin Jr., 24, at large, pleaded guilty to two charges Monday during his final pretrial hearing. He was found guilty of trafficking in drugs, a fifth-degree felony, and for the improper handling of a firearm, a first-degree misdemeanor.
Factoring both charges, he is facing a maximum sentence of 42 months in prison and a $10,000 fine. Tobin was arrested on Oct. 10 being found with drugs and a firearm in his vehicle.
• Michael W. Butts, 407 ½ Wood St., Piqua, pleaded guilty to an amended charge of assault, a first-degree misdemeanor, during his final pretrial hearing.
He is facing a maximum sentence of 180 days in the county jail and a $1,000 fine. He struck the victim causing injuries.
• William D. Bleacher, 46, entered a guilty plea to an amended charge of receiving stolen property, a first-degree misdemeanor, during a status conference. He is facing a maximum sentence of 180 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
He was found to have taken rings belonging to another person.
• Devon Brown, 23, at large, had his bond set at $7,500 for his conviction on attempted burglary, a fourth-degree felony, during a bond hearing Monday. His maximum sentence would be 18 months with the ODRC an a $5,000 fine. He was remanded to the custody of the county sheriff.
Brown was found guilty of entering a home at 833 Clinton Ave., and, taking a video game system.
• Landon S. Murray, 23, 1703 Letitia Drive, was sentenced to five years of community control on a charge of possession of drugs, a fifth-degree felony. He was ordered to complete the counseling program at the Western Ohio Regional Treatment and Habilitation (WORTH) Center in Lima.
He was also fined $300 and assessed court costs. He was arrested on June 30 and found with heroin.
• Lance C. Shewalter, 33, 103 W. Lynn St., Apt. 6, Botkins, had his probation revoked and returned to the county jail. He was ordered to partake in the counseling program at the WORTH Center.
He was found guilty of attempting to rob McDonald’s in Sidney on May 25.
• Bryant Allen Pennington, 39, Detroit, Michigan, did not appear for his sentencing Monday on a charge of possession of drugs, a fifth-degree felony. A warrant was issued for his arrest.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.
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