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Superior Court Briefs: March 14 - March 16

Andy McKeever

Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, March 14.

Michele Lynn Mathews, 44, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, manufacturing cocaine, drug violation in a school zone, possession of morphine, and possession of clonazepam.

The charges stem from execution of a search warrant at 82 Lincoln St. on June 9, 2010. The possession of morphine and possession of clonazepam charges were second offenses. An additional charge of drug violation within a school zone was dismissed.

She was sentenced to three to five years in state prison at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction for the manufacturing cocaine. She was given concurrent Berkshire County House of Correction sentences on the other charges.

Lionell B. Pittman Jr.
, 21, of Beacon, N.Y.  pleaded guilty to single counts of mayhem, assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, larceny from a person, assault and battery and intimidation of a witness.

Pittman was sentenced to four to six years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction on all charges except the assault and battery charge. He was given two years for that charge to be served concurrently at the Berkshire County House of Correction. One county of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon was dismissed at the request of the state.

Pittman assaulted a 19-year-old male in Great Barrington on Sept. 16, 2009.

Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, March 15.

Robert L. Johnson III, 24, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf for a bevy of charges.

He was charged with single counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the daytime with intent to commit a felony, breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime with intent to commit a felony, attempt to misuse a credit card, and attempt to commit larceny under $250. He was charged with eight counts of larceny under $250, six counts of improper use of a credit card under $250, two counts of larceny of a credit card and two counts of receiving stolen property over $250.

Johnson allegedly broke into two motor vehicles, took credit cards and using them to obtain merchandise. The incidents allegedly occurred in the county between August and October of 2010.

Bail is set at $100 because Johnson is already being held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on other charges.

Nicholas Heller, 21, of Great Barrington pleaded guilt to single counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, drug violation within a school zone, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.

Heller was ordered to serve a total of three years at the Berkshire County House of Correction and two years of probation. The charges stem from a Feb. 24, 2009 incident in Lee.

Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, March 16.

Brendon Klein, 29, pleaded guilty to several charges resulting from a Jan. 30, 2009 assault of a 51-year-old man and a 53-year-old woman in Pittsfield.

Klein pleaded guilty to two counts of armed assault with intent to rob and one count of assault and battery by mean of a dangerous weapon.

He was given a 15 month sentence at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and placed on two years probation for the remaining charges. In part of the probation Klein must perform 100 hours of community service, refrain from using drugs and alcohol and undergo testing and counseling.

Gregory Mathews, 46, pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, manufacturing cocaine and possession of morphine as well as two counts of drug violation in a school zone.

He was given concurrent three to four year prison sentences at the Massachusetts Correctional institution at Cedar Junction. The charges stem from an execution of a search warrant at 82 Lincoln Street in Pittsfield on June 9, 2010.

James A. Davis, 49, of Pittsfield was found guilty on multiple drug charges.

Davis sold cocaine in Pittsfield on three occasions in March 2009 and was in possession of cocaine, oxycodone and hydrocodone when arrested on March 10, 2009.

Davis will be held without bail until his sentencing hearing on March 22. He was guilty for three counts of distribution of cocaine, one count of possession of cocaine, one count of possession of oxycodone and one count of possession of hydrocodone.

Tags: heroin, assault, cocaine, oxycodone, mayhem, larceny, hydrocodone, clonazepam, morphine      

Landowners Say $40K in Timber Stolen

Staff Reports

STAMFORD, Vt. — A Connecticut couple are accusing a Bennington man of stealing $40,000 worth of lumber from their wooded property - four years after the alleged crime was committed.

Robert Kobelia, 57, has been cited to appear in Vermont District Court in Bennington on Jan. 26 on a charge of grand larceny.

Lynn and Walter Nightingale of Bolton, Conn., filed a complaint with state police late last year, saying they'd discovered in 2008 that the property had been logged four years before, sometime during January or February 2004, without their consent.

They had reportedly contacted the Kobelia, owner of Northeast Wood Products, who told them that he oversaw the operation, but thought they had a verbal agreement. The Nightingales' told state police they did discuss the possibility of having their land logged, but out of all the bids given to them, Kobelia's was the lowest, and they decided not to have their land logged. 

They hired a forestry consultant, who estimated the value of the standing lumber, as well as a private attorney. State police received a report from the consultant as well as e-mail and faxed correspondence from Kobelia to the victim's attorney, which was used to establish probable cause that a crime had been committed.

Kobelia, 57, was interviewed Dec. 31 at the Shaftsbury barracks. According to police, Kobelia said he felt as though there was a verbal agreement between he and the victim. He acknowledged that he never paid the victims for the logs removed, and stated that was it was because of a billing error after a computer crash. He told troopers that he is currently unable to pay Nightingales.

The forestry consultant placed the value of the logs taken from the victim's property at $40,601.07. During the interview, Kobelia maintained that he knows he has to pay the victims for what was taken, but disputed the amount quoted, and told state police that all of his assets are now in foreclosure. 

Tags: larceny, land, lumber      
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