by Audrey Thomasson
LANCASTER—A man convicted of felony sexual battery was sentenced to 40 years in prison last week, with all but 10 years suspended.
Russell L. Dodson of Lancaster made an Alford plea of “no contest” in September in a plea deal that nolle prossed six additional charges of rape, sodomy and abduction.
Prior to sentencing in Lancaster Circuit Court, Dodson filed to change his plea to ‘not guilty.’ While he later withdrew that request, Circuit Court Judge R. Michael McKenney noted that Dodson had been fully questioned and informed of the consequences of his plea in September.
“Mr. Dodson said he got a legal background by watching Channel 6,” said Judge McKenney. “It’s clear that the Commonwealth’s Attorney (Jan Smith) has made significant adjustments…It would not have been in your best interest” to try to reverse the plea.
Dodson was sentenced to 20 years on each of two sexual battery convictions with 15 years suspended on each, leaving two active sentences of five years to be served consecutively.
Upon release, Dodson will be subject to four years of supervised probation and he is required to participate in psychiatric and sexual behavior treatment programs. Additionally, he cannot have any contact with the victim.
Judge McKenney also presided over the following cases on January 6:
Timothy LaMarr Moody of Hampton was in court for probation violation on 12 convictions. On a defense motion, the case was continued to March 17.
Phillip Ethan Dean of White Stone appeared in court on probation violation of two felony convictions. Wayne Painter was named his court appointed attorney. Trial was set for March 10.
Deondre Lampkin of Heathsville did not show up in court on a charge of probation violation. A capias was issued for his arrest.
Neal Elliott Sluss of Chesapeake was ruled competent to stand trial on two felony charges of destruction of property. His case was set for March 24.
Judge McKenney dismissed with prejudice a felony charge of manufacturing a controlled substance against Robert J. Redmond.
Maria F. Thompson, facing eight felonies and four misdemeanor charges of forgery, uttering and obtaining money under false pretenses, was ordered to cooperate with a court ordered psychiatric evaluation. The judge revoked her bond and set trial for February 27 to allow time for a doctor to do the evaluation at the jail.
Jasmine Elizabeth Taylor of Heathsville pled not guilty to “probation violation prior to trial.” Because the Commonwealth stated they were not ready to proceed, the judge dismissed the charge and returned Taylor to pre-trial supervision. Trial on the original charge was set for March 17.
Curt Dowdy of Farnham was sentenced to 10 years on a felony conviction of manufacturing a controlled substance, with eight years and eight months suspended, leaving an active sentence of one year and four months.
Judge McKenney rescheduled Circuit Court in Lancaster County to take place each Friday. Previously, court was held every other Friday.
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