'Bubba was havin' me stealing'

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The realization of theft and, in another case, the sale of bogus drugs were among allegations leading to several guilty pleas in Marshall County Circuit Court last week.

A 16-year-old is quoted in a defendant's court file as saying that when told not to talk about moving personal possessions, "Right then, I knew that he, Bubba, was havin' me stealing."

Herschell Edward "Bubba" Harris, 42, 960 W. Cedar St., was indicted last May 23 when District Attorney Chuck Crawford alleged Harris "aided an innocent or irresponsible person" in early March when John Wassermann of Barnes Hollow Road became a theft victim.

Five motorcycles, several wheels and scrap metal -- all valued at about $2,600 -- were taken, according to Sheriff's Detective Bart Fagan's affidavit in Harris' arrest warrant.

Defense attorney Jheri Beth Rich represented Harris who pleaded guilty to Judge Robert Crigler on Wednesday in Marshall County Circuit Court where Harris is to return on Sept. 19 for sentencing.

His charges, criminal responsibility and theft, carry a range of prison terms of 2-12 years, according to sentencing documents in Harris' case file. The actual term depends on prior convictions. Assistant District Attorney Eddie Barnard has filed a notice saying he wants Crigler to consider Harris' previous conviction on a harassment charge in October 1995.

Also scheduled for sentencing is Jeremy Wayne Richardson, 27, of 205 Heil Quaker Ave., who pleaded guilty Wednesday to drug charges.

Indicted on May 23, Richardson is accused of selling a counterfeit controlled substance about a year earlier to a confidential informant working for the Sheriff's Department, according to Detective Fagan.

That sale, as if it was cocaine, was among four transactions which allegedly included methadone, dihydrocodeinone, 12 "white pills," and the bogus cocaine, according to the allegations that landed Richardson in court.

Since his guilty plea to Crigler on Wednesday, Richardson is to return to circuit court with his defense attorney, Bill Haywood, on Sept. 19. Records show that Richardson may apply for a split sentence, meaning some of his time may be spent in jail while the balance may be on probation.

Also pleading guilty Wednesday were the following two people.

Douglas Ray Malinowski, 50, of Hearthstone Drive, Chapel Hill, is scheduled for sentencing on Sept. 19 on a drug charge stemming from a June 15, 2006 marijuana transaction, court records show.

Natalie Carrell Perryman, 21, 302 Hardison Ave., was indicted June 20 on a charge from a 17th Judicial District Drug Task Force officer who said she sold one of the task force's confidential informants nearly .5 grams of crack cocaine on Jan. 18. She is represented by Brian C. Penland of Columbia and is reportedly eligible for alternative sentencing which may include probation.

And in a separate case, as a result of a June 6 guilty plea accepted by Judge Crigler from Sherrie Denise Smith, 45, the Cornersville Road woman has agreed to an 8-year term on one drug sale charge and two 3-year terms on two other charges of selling drugs. However, she's to serve 365 days in the county jail with the balance of her term on probation.

She was represented by David McKenzie

The 8-year term is at 30 percent, meaning her release from probation is possible, but not guaranteed after serving nearly two years.

"The judge determined she was eligible for split confinement," McKenzie said. "She's to serve 365 days in jail with credit for the 99 days she's already served."

From Wednesday she's serving 266 more days, then the balance of her 8-year term at 30 percent on probation.

When she gets out, she will begin payment of fines to the state: $2,000 per charge for a total of $6,000, McKenzie said.