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UPDATE: Sentencing of Ex-W.Va. Judge Delayed Until April

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

UPDATE 12/24/2013 2:10 PM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The sentencing of a former Mingo County circuit judge is pushed back to next spring.

Michael Thornsbury was scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 13. Court documents show that U.S. District Judge Thomas E. Johnston on Monday granted a prosecution request to delay the proceeding.

Thornsbury's sentencing is now set for April 21, 2014.

Federal prosecutors sought the delay to given them more time to investigate information Thornsbury provided in a corruption probe.

Thornsbury pleaded guilty in October to a federal conspiracy charge and resigned from the bench.

He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


UPDATE 12/20/2013 10:50 AM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Federal prosecutors are seeking a delay in the sentencing of a former Mingo County circuit judge so they can have more time to investigate information he provided in a corruption probe.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Steve Ruby filed a motion Thursday asking a federal judge to delay Michael Thornsbury's Jan. 13 sentencing by 90 days.

Media outlets report Ruby's motion says prosecutors don't anticipate their investigation stemming from Thornsbury's cooperation will be finished by his sentencing date.

Thornsbury resigned in October before pleading guilty to conspiring to deprive campaign sign maker George White of his constitutional rights.

The charge states Thornsbury helped devise a scheme to keep White from talking to the FBI about allegedly providing Sheriff Eugene Crum with prescription pills. Crum was killed in April in an unrelated shooting.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


UPDATE 12/18/2013 3:20 PM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - An advisory panel recommends two Mingo County public defenders as potential candidates to replace former Circuit Court Judge Michael Thornsbury.

Media outlets report that the Judicial Vacancy Advisory Commission submitted the names of Teresa McCune and Jonathan Jewel to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin on Tuesday.

The commission also recommended Deloris Nibert to replace former Putnam County Family Court Judge William Watkins. Nibert was the only applicant for the position.

Thornsbury pleaded guilty in October to a federal conspiracy charge and resigned from the bench.

Watkins resigned in November. The state Supreme Court had suspended him in March until the end of his term in 2016. He was accused of delaying rulings, screaming and cursing at litigants, and failing to enter domestic violence orders into the state's tracking system.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


UPDATE 10/2/2013 2:35 P.M.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A suspended Mingo County judge pleaded guilty to conspiracy.

Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury entered the plea Wednesday in federal court in Charleston.

Hours earlier, Thornsbury submitted a resignation letter. His attorney, Stephen Jory, also said the judge consented to disbarment in a letter to the state Office of Disciplinary Counsel.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston scheduled sentencing for Jan. 13. Thornsbury faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Thornsbury was accused of participating in a scheme to protect the reputation of Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum from revelations he'd bought drugs from a campaign sign-maker.

In exchange, prosecutors said they would dismiss charges in a separate case in which Thornsbury's accused of framing his former secretary's husband.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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UPDATE 10/2/2013 12:40 PM

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The attorney for a suspended Mingo County judge says his client has resigned from the bench.

Federal prosecutors say Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury is expected to plead guilty to a conspiracy charge Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Charleston.

Attorney Steve Jory tells The Associated Press that Thornsbury submitted a resignation letter to the state Supreme Court. Thornsbury also has consented to disbarment in a letter to the state Office of Disciplinary Counsel.

Thornsbury is accused of participating in a scheme to protect the reputation of Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum from revelations he'd bought drugs from a campaign sign-maker.

Prosecutors allege Thornsbury and others offered a lighter sentence if the man fired his lawyer and hired one they preferred.

Crum died in April in an unrelated shooting.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A Mingo County commissioner pleads guilty to a federal extortion charge.

David Baisden entered the plea Tuesday in federal court in Charleston.

Baisden faces up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is set for Jan. 14, 2014.

The 66-year-old Baisden was accused of trying to buy tires for his personal vehicle at a government discount, then terminating the county's contract with Appalachian Tire when it refused to cooperate.

Under the plea agreement, Baisden must resign from the commission.

Mingo County Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury is expected to plead guilty Wednesday in a separate federal case. Prosecutors allege he conspired with others to imprison a man who had sold drugs to Sheriff Eugene Crum. Crum died in April in an unrelated shooting

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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