Parolee back behind bars

By Terri Flagg -

Surry County Courthouse

Terri Flagg | The News

DOBSON — William Kelly Wood only removed the electronic monitoring device bound to his ankle so he’d get sent back to prison, his attorney told the court in a plea hearing Thursday.

He got his wish – and then some.

After more than eight and a half years behind bars, Wood had been released from the N.C. Department of Adult Corrections in September 2015, according to Department of Public Safety information.

“He was planning success,” said Marion Boone, defense attorney, explaining that Wood had taken advantage of vocational training while incarcerated and had emerged a certified cabinetmaker.

“He had a job lined up within two days,” of his release, she said.

However, juggling a job with his post-release supervision obligations proved difficult.

Wood asked his supervisor if he could finish the rest of his sentence in prison instead.

When his time was up, in 9 months, he’d be free to start fresh. However, he was kept on post-release supervision.

At first he was able to keep up with commitments, according to Boone.

“He did everything he was supposed to do,” but mandatory three appointments per week at a local treatment facility tipped the balance.

“That’s when the problems started,” his attorney told the judge.

Possibly on the recommendation of a friend, Wood removed the ankle bracelet Feb. 1, thinking, Boone said, that if he were considered an absconder his supervision would be revoked.

Which it was, when he was arrested Feb. 14, according to DPS information.

But he was also issued additional felony violations: interference with an electronic monitoring device and acquiring the status of a habitual felon.

Wood pleaded guilty to the interference charge on Thursday and the state agreed to dismiss the habitual felon charge.

Because the defendant’s most serious underlying charge was the class D felony of robbery with a dangerous weapon, the conviction was sentenced as a class E felony.

Boone asked the court to sentence her client in the mitigated range.

“I think he intends to start using trades he’s been taught,” she said, “and hopes to never be in this courtroom again.”

Morgan, taking record of a mitigating factor that the defendant had accepted responsibility, ordered Wood to be imprisoned for 36 to 56 months.

Other matters addressed during the July term of Superior Court included:

• Roger Dale Jones, 58, of North Glen Avenue, Winston-Salem, pleaded guilty to two felonies and a slew of misdemeanor violations on July 6.

“The majority are traffic in nature,” Assistant District Attorney Mark Miller stated in court of the 27 total charges.

“On various dates the defendant was in violation.”

Jones had been charged with DWI in August 2013, after officers spotted his vehicle turn around and leave while approaching a license check point.

The charge was aggravated level one due to his having a prior DWI conviction within seven years.

A February 2015 incident also proved more serious. Jones was seen by a neighbor trying to back a Chevrolet Chevelle, valued at $7,500, out of the victim’s driveway, Miller said.

The defendant claimed he had permission.

He did not, Miller said, and Jones was charged with attempted felony larceny and breaking and or entering a motor vehicle, which are both class I felonies.

Jones pleaded guilty to 27 total charges on Tuesday, which were consolidated to three judgments for sentencing.

On the DWI charge, an intermediate sentence of 36 months imprisonment suspended pending the successful completion of 36 months of supervised probation. He was ordered to continue with an intensive 35 day inpatient substance abuse program and associated 2 year follow up. As part of that split sentence he was ordered to undergo 180 days of Continuous Alcohol Monitoring.

On a class I felony charge, he was given an eight- to 19-month suspended sentence with 36 months of supervised probation, to be served consecutively after the first sentence.

On a class 1 misdemeanor charge of simple possession of a schedule IV controlled substance, was given a 120 day suspended sentence with 18 months of supervised probation.

Other matters addressed during the July term of Superior Court included:

• On July 6, John Christopher Yarbrough, 30, of Sunset Drive, Mount Airy, pleaded guilty to obtaining property by false pretense and possession of a stolen motor vehicle (which are class H felonies), altering a title, and two counts of misdemeanor larceny.

Through a plea agreement with the District Attorney’s office, two counts of breaking or entering a motor vehicle were dismissed.

Yarbrough was given a community sentence of 6 to 17 months and placed on supervised probation for 30 months. He was additionally ordered to pay $3,685 total restitution to three victims and to continue coursework at Surry Community College.

• Herman Glenn Badgett, 68, of Whitaker Chapel Road, Pilot Mountain, was convicted of several drug charges on July 7.

The defendant admitted to selling quantities of methamphetamine to police informants on dates during the week of Nov. 6-13, 2014.

After those warrants had been issued, he was also found in possession of small quantities of methamphetamine and hydrocodone during a traffic stop, Assistant District Attorney Tim Watson stated during the plea hearing.

Defense Attorney Chris Clifton stated that Badgett had become a drug user later in life.

“He’s not a scofflaw,” he said, explaining that he sold drugs to feed his habit, which was “classic user/seller behavior.”

Badgett pleaded guilty to three counts of selling methamphetamine and the lesser charge of felony possession of a schedule III controlled substance, reduced from trafficking opium or heroin, and possession of methamphetamine.

In exchange for his guilty pleas, the state dismissed two counts of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver methamphetamine, one count of possession with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver a schedule II controlled substance and one count of trafficking opium or heroin.

Clifton also noted that Badgett had suffered a stroke in April 2015 and ongoing health problems included renal failure.

“He’s worked hard and realizes it’s going to kill him if he uses it again,” the attorney said.

Badgett was given two concurrent sentences of 12 to 24 months with 36 months of supervised probation.

Surry County Courthouse County CourthouseTerri Flagg | The News

By Terri Flagg

Reach Terri Flagg at 415-4734.

Reach Terri Flagg at 415-4734.

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