Lancaster County Circuit Court Report

LANCASTER—A Warsaw man with suspended prison sentences totaling 448 years, pled guilty in Lancaster County Circuit Court last Friday to violating probation on larceny convictions.

James Maritimes Sellars has an accumulated suspended prison sentence totaling over 600 years when coupled with adjoining counties, said Judge R. Michael McKenney.

During the hearing, probation officer Lawrence Wade testified that Sellers failed to show up for appointments and traveled outside his restricted jurisdiction by falsifying the purpose of trips, including claims of family reunions that did not occur and his grandmother’s death.

“He lied about her death to go to Mechanicsville,” Wade testified. “He lied again about the same death. In a drive-by check of the grandmother’s house in Richmond, she answered the door.”

Wade said Sellars also has “sex offender registration violations” from a 1995 conviction in Lancaster, which the probation office chose not to pursue. Wade called for a mental health evaluation because of the defendant’s behavior and for impersonating a police officer.

Sentencing guidelines call for one to one-and-a-half years in jail, said Commonwealth’s Attorney Jan Smith.

“Because of his pattern of behavior in continuing to use family to get travel passes, we ask for no less than two years,” said Smith.

Judge McKenney noted Sellars has 448 years, six months and 16 days of a suspended sentence in Lancaster.

“The great lie of our system is that we give someone three or four hundred years. It’s wrong,” said Judge McKenney about the unrealistic sentence.

He said the system addresses accountability, but in Sellars’ case of constant abuses, he didn’t believe it was working.

“I don’t believe it is an appropriate use of resources to force him into a mental evaluation,” he said. Noting Sellars is serving two years in Richmond County, he ordered an additional active sentence of a year-and-a-half to be served consecutively. Sellars was ordered to pay restitution of $660.34 at $25 a month, and reminded to register as a sex offender upon release from prison in order to avoid additional charges.

Other cases

The following cases also were heard by Judge McKenney April 7 in Lancaster County Circuit Court.

Jerevon R. Henderson of Lancaster was in court for a review of probation violation on a felony conviction. Judge McKenney ordered him to complete a substance abuse program and provide written verification of completion for another review May 12.

Joseph Cox Jr. of Lively was in court on violation of probation on 13 felony convictions for falling behind on $6,678.68 in restitution still owed. Trial was set for June 9.

A capias warrant was issued for Oriel Purchell Lee of Reedville for pre-trial violation on a felony charge. The case was continued to April 28.

Marie Thompson was ordered to complete evaluations on her mental capacity to stand trial. Judge McKenney warned her that additional delays would not be tolerated and that her bond was not a license for continued bad behavior. Trial was set for April 28 on eight felonies and four misdemeanors of forgery and obtaining money on false pretenses.

The case against Kimberly Dawn Benson of Lancaster was set for trial June 9 on five felony charges of distribution of schedule I/II drugs.

Benson’s co-defendant, Brian Keith Painter of Weems, was set for trial on June 9 on four felony charges of distribution of schedule I/II drugs.

Ella Louise Hardy of Kilmarnock was set for trial June 30 on felony charges of distribution of schedule I/II drugs.

Kyle Wesley Davis of Weems, charged with felony manufacture of controlled substance, was told to work out attorney arrangements before trial on May 12.

Demar Antonio Davenport was arraigned on two felony firearm charges stemming from 2010. Arraignment was continued to April 21 when multiple defendants will appear for arraignment in the case.

The arraignment of Kevin O’Neil Fauntleroy of Warsaw on firearm charges was continued to April 21.