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Lowell man charged in domestic incident

From staff reports

The Washington County Grand Jury recently indicted a Lowell man on five charges, including felonious assault and criminal damaging.

Charus L. Bennett, 29, last known address of 1455 East Branch Road, was indicted on one count of domestic violence, a first-degree misdemeanor; one count of felonious assault, a second-degree felony; one count of criminal damaging or endangering, a first-degree misdemeanor; one count of unlawful restraint, a third-degree misdemeanor; and one count of menacing by stalking, a first-degree misdemeanor.

According to Washington County Assistant Prosecutor Jim Schneider, Bennett and the victim have a child together and had been living together until the end of September. They were no longer living together in October when the incident happened, and Bennett was allegedly unhappy about it.

“Prior to this incident, (Bennett) had been coming around her place of business to talk to her or yell at her,” Schneider said. “They told him not to come around the property or he would be charged with trespassing.”

On the night of the offenses, the victim was working the night shift and had left work on her “lunch” break. Unbeknownst to her, Bennett allegedly followed her to the Speedway at Colegate and Muskingum drives, Schneider said.

Bennett reportedly followed her into the store and started yelling at her. Although she tried to go back to work, Bennett stopped her.

They stopped at Glendale and Colegate drives, at the Marietta fire station, when both left their vehicles, continuing to argue, Schneider said.

“He smacks her in the face and puts her in a headlock,” he explained. “They wrestle, and she gets in her car and he gets in his.”

Near the entrance to Washington State Community College, Bennett tried to pass and get in front of her. As she moved over into the middle lane, he rammed into her car.

“She claims this has happened before, where he got in front and he tried to stop her,” Schneider said.

The victim decided not to let him pass, each vehicle going approximately 30 miles per hour. He allegedly slammed into her car a couple more times.

At the North Hills Lanes bowling alley on Colegate, they pulled into the parking lot. They continue to argue, and when she tried to turn her car around to leave, he rammed into the back of her car, dislodging her back bumper. She raced back to work with no incident.

When she got back to work, the victim called the Marietta Police Department. When the police arrived, they saw people helping the victim tie her back bumper back onto her car, Schneider said.

Bennett fled the scene and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Schneider said the felonious assault charge was for Bennett slamming into the victim’s car on Glendale Avenue and in the bowling alley parking lot.

“He was also indicted for domestic violence, which was a misdemeanor because he does not have prior criminal history,” Schneider said. “Thankfully this happened at 1 a.m., so there was no traffic, but there was also no way for her to get help.”

The criminal damaging charge is for hitting her car and for creating a risk of physical harm to the victim.

Two weeks after the incident, the victim was traveling on Ohio 60 during the daytime when she encountered Bennett again in his vehicle.

Schneider said Bennett didn’t hit her car, but he kept getting in front of her and putting on the brakes.

“She had her two kids with her and was concerned for their safety,” he said. “The (Ohio State) highway patrol came out and took her report and charged him with aggravated menacing.”

In the first part of November, Bennett was arrested for both incidents. There was a warrant out for his arrest from the Marietta Police for the first incident, and a warrant from the state highway patrol for the second.

“The second incident is a separate case, so he wasn’t indicted on it,” Schneider explained. “The matter is still pending in Marietta Municipal Court.”

Also indicted:

¯ Jeremy M. Phipps, 40, of 801 Broad St., Conneaut, was indicted on one count of aggravated possession of methamphetamine, a fifth-degree felony. The indictment stems from an arrest in November 2018 in Marietta.

¯ Cynthia K. Myers (Dailey), 45, of 829 Ridge St., Marietta, was indicted on one count of possession of heroin, a fifth-degree felony, and one count of receiving stolen property, a fifth-degree felony. The indictment stems from an arrest in July 2018 on Ohio 821 at milepost 3 in Muskingum Township. She was found with Ohio license plates identifying motor vehicle registration as belonging to Michael Martin.

¯ Dwayne E. Miller, 55, and Keryn A. Miller, both of 1177 County Road 9, Marietta, were indicted on four charges, including two counts of theft, both fourth-degree felonies, and two counts of receiving stolen property, both fourth-degree felonies. The indictments stem from incidents from an arrest in December by deputies from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.

A deputy, along with the Marietta City police and fire departments, were called to Walmart in reference to a vehicle on fire in the parking lot. A man and woman were observed fleeing the vehicle. The vehicle was found to be stolen from Westfall Towing, County Road 9, Marietta. Westfall checked and found, along with the vehicle, spools of copper wire, light bars, a key and key fob were missing also. The Millers reside next to the impound lot at 1177 County Road 9 and the residence is within sight of the impound lot, separated only by a field.

Deputies processed the vehicle, recovering a notebook with “Keryn” written on it, along with other notes written in relation to criminal activity. Items recovered from the vehicle included copper cable. Earlier that day, the sheriff’s office had received a complaint from Travis Westfall that someone was observed on the surveillance cameras at the impound lot. A check of the lot did not yield a suspect at that time, however, a subject was reported to have fled toward the Miller residence.

A search warrant was obtained for Dwayne and Keryn Miller’s residence. During the search a key to an Audi (which fit an Audi at the impound lot) was located in Dwayne’s pocket. Other items of evidence were recovered that had been located in vehicles or on the property of Westfall Towing. A burn barrel full of wire coating was also located on the property.

¯ Chadrick E. Parsons, 33, of 1036 Campbell Ridge Road, Ellenboro, W.Va., was indicted on one count of aggravated trafficking in methamphetamine, a third-degree felony, and aggravated possession of methamphetamine, a third-degree felony. The indictments stem from an arrest in September 2017 in Belpre. He was also found with $160 in cash, which is forfeitable, as it was proceeds from the offense.

¯ Amanda J. Hogue, 40, of 65 Gaines Trailer Court, Ellenboro, W.Va., was indicted on one count of aggravated possession of oxycodone, a third-degree felony. She was arrested along with Chadrick E. Parsons in September 2017 in Belpre.

¯ Joseph S. VanGorden, 28, of 195 Goose Run Road, Marietta, was indicted on one count of the fifth-degree felony aggravated possession of 10.80 grams of psilocyn, which are hallucinogenic mushrooms. The indictment stems from an arrest in January 2018.

¯ Charlene E. Lockamy, 33, of 717 Circle Drive, Belpre, was indicted on one count of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony. The indictment stems from an arrest in October at Ohio 618, mile post 6 in Washington County. She was found with a loaded Glock 22, semi-automatic handgun in her vehicle that was accessible to the driver and passengers without leaving the vehicle. The handgun is subject to forfeit.

¯ Tricia A. Blair, 35, last known address of 106 Plum St., Marietta, was indicted on one count of receiving stolen property, a fifth-degree felony, and one count of misuse of a credit card, a first-degree misdemeanor. The indictment stems from an incident in December at 804 Pike St., Marietta, where she attempted to use a stolen credit card.

¯ Robert M. McKitrick, 65, of 45978 County Road 9, Marietta, was indicted on one count of domestic violence, a fourth-degree felony, and one count of obstructing official business, a second-degree misdemeanor. The indictments stem from an arrest in October at 4597 County Road 9, Reno.

A deputy with the sheriff’s office was dispatched to the County Road 9 address on Oct. 21 in reference to a woman reporting her husband, Robert McKitrick Sr., had assaulted her. She said he shoved her and then struck her in the face and then left the residence and drove away in his truck. Deputies met with Robert who denied being at the County Road 9 address, stating that he spent the evening in Marietta. Robert’s whereabouts were confirmed, however, as later inquiry into his whereabouts proved that Robert had asked the subject to say he had been with them on that date/time, however he had not been there at all that evening.

¯ Shawn D. Lent, 45, of 11540 State Route 339, Vincent, was indicted on one charge of theft, a first-degree misdemeanor, and one count of possession of .18 grams of methamphetamine, a fifth-degree felony. The indictments stem from an arrest on Aug. 6 at 10200 State Route 60 near Lowell.

Also indicted was Teri A. Lent, 45, of the same address. She was indicted on four charges, including one count of theft, a first-degree misdemeanor; one count of possession of .23 grams of methamphetamine, a fifth-degree felony; one count of driving under suspension, a first-degree misdemeanor; and one count of operating a motor vehicle bearing invalid license plate or identification mark, a fourth-degree misdemeanor.

According to police reports, a sheriff’s deputy located a vehicle parked beside the Dollar General Store in Lowell, and made contact with a male and female that were loading items into the back of the Dodge Durango. The subjects were identified as Shawn Lent and Teri Lent. It was found that they both had suspended licenses. The license plate on the Durango belonged on a different vehicle, which expired in 2015. Teri reported she drove to this location knowing the plates were fictitious and that she had no license. The deputy observed inside the vehicle a black rolling cart, a baking rack, and some cardboard boxes, which they advised were taken from beside the store, however, stated the rest of the items were from their family’s property or dumpsters. Dollar General personnel stated that no one had permission to take the items beside the business.

A search also revealed two baggies of methamphetamine, two straws and a razor blade. A zipper pouch was located with a baggie of a green leafy substance, two small containers with lids, one containing a green leafy substance and one with suspected marijuana seeds. This pouch also contained a baggie of suspected methamphetamine and a glass smoking pipe with suspected marijuana residue.

¯ Robert E. Carpenter Sr., 45, of 2665 Mill Fork Road, Marietta, was indicted on one count of vandalism, a fifth-degree felony, and one count of criminal damaging, a second-degree misdemeanor. The indictments stem from an arrest in January 2019 in Marietta.

¯ Douglas G. Snider Jr., 46, of 1314 Glendale Road, Marietta, was indicted on one count of theft, a fifth-degree felony, and one count of burglary, a second-degree felony. The indictments stem from an arrest in January at 214 Main St., Lowell. Snider allegedly broke into the home of Elizabeth Knox and stole approximately $2,000 worth of baseball cards.

¯ Cody D. Smarr, 26, of 225 Stone Road, Belpre, was indicted on one count of domestic violence, a fourth-degree felony, and one count of obstructing official business, a second-degree misdemeanor. The indictments stem from an arrest in January in Belpre. He had previously pleaded guilty to criminal damaging, where Smarr knew the victim was pregnant at the time of the offense.

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