Last updated: August 22. 2013 8:51AM - 1468 Views
Sarah Hawley shawley@civitasmedia.com

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POMEROY — The man convicted Wednesday night on three counts in connection with an April 2013 methamphetamine lab was sentenced to nine years in prison.

Judge Michael Ward, sitting by assignment, sentenced Timothy W. Wickersham to serve a mandatory sentence of nine years on the first count of which the jury convicted him two weeks ago — illegal manufacture of methamphetamine. The charge also carried the stipulation that it was done within 100 feet of a child.

Defense Attorney David Baer had argued previously that the three charges of which Wickersham was convicted should not be sentenced separately as they are allied offenses, and he should only be sentenced on one charge.

Wickersham was convicted of illegal manufacture of methamphetamine, a felony of the first degree; illegal assembly of possession of chemicals for the manufacture of methamphetamine, a felony of the second degree; and endangering children, a felony of the third degree.

Judge Ward said during the hearing that the recidivism factor was high in the case given that this was the fifth conviction for Wickersham. He had previously been convicted of escape and failure to appear following release on an OR bond (2009), possession of drugs (2007), and bank fraud (2003).

Ward also hear arguments Wednesday on probation violations against Wickersham related to two cases from 2009. Ward found that the conviction was enough grounds to find probable cause that Wickersham had violated his probation.

Baer argued that the sentencing entries in the cases did not stipulate a specific prison term if Wickersham were to violate the terms of his community control. Baer stated past case law which says a specific term must be stated in the entry or the offender can not be sentenced to prison time.

Ward agreed that the entries were defective, and left Wickersham on five years community control in the cases, with the time to begin following Wickersham’s release from prison and SEPTA.

An additional term of Wednesday’s sentence is that Wickersham must complete SEPTA following his release from prison. Ward did specify that if Wickersham were to violate his community control in the five years following his release from prison he would be subject to an underlying term of 18 months for failure to appear (Case 09CR112) and three years for escape (Case 09CR126).

The court determined there was no prison time remaining on a 2007 case against Wickersham.

During the trial two weeks ago, jurors heard testimony of law enforcement officers Deputy Brody Davis, Sgt. Chris Gill, Deputy Joe Barnhart, and Officer Shannon Smith concerning the events of April 12, along with Children Services Investigator Elizabeth King. Wickersham’s landlord Pam Diddle also testified during the trial.

All witnesses were called by Meigs County Prosecutor Colleen Williams, with defense attorney David Baer calling no witnesses in the case. Wickersham did not testify on his own behalf.

The charges were the result of a methamphetamine lab and chemicals for the manufacture of methamphetamine found at 303 Fifth Street in Racine on April 12.

In the early morning hours of that day, Deputies Davis and Barnhart along with King responded to a child safety check at the residence. Upon arrival at the home, Stacy Holter and her four-month-old child were at the residence, but Wickersham was not present.

Deputy Barhart conducted a safety check at the house, finding probable cause for a search warrant. During the execution of the search warrant, deputies located a methamphetamine lab and precursors for the making of methamphetamine.

Wickersham was arrested a few days later at a residence on Peach Fork Road. He has been in the custody of the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office since his arrest.

Holter, 37, of Racine was also charged in the case. A motions hearing in her case is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Sept. 16, with a jury trial scheduled for Oct. 3. Holter is represented by Attorney William Eachus of Gallipolis.

Holter remains free on $25,000 bond.

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