Following hearings on Wednesday in Highland County Common Pleas Court, two defendants are heading to prison while two other defendants pleaded guilty with one to be sentenced next month and the other going into the prosecutor’s diversion program.
Jerry F. Green, 37, of Hillsboro, pleaded guilty to illegal manufacture of drugs, a second-degree felony, and was sentenced to four years in prison, a term that was jointly recommended by the state and defense.
Green’s attorney, J.D. Wagoner, told the court that the defendant has been in treatment since September at a Piketon facility where he is enrolled in various counseling programs and classes. Wagoner also had letters from the facility as to Green’s involvement and progress at the facility.
“He’s never walked away, never relapsed,” Wagoner said of his client and his time at treatment. Wagoner requested that the judge allow Green to begin serving his sentence after he has completed the treatment program.
Green said he has accepted full responsibility for his actions, but added that he “would greatly appreciate” the opportunity to continue with and complete his treatment before going to prison.
While Highland County Common Pleas Court Judge Rocky Coss said it was “commendable” that Green had taken steps to get treatment and seemed to be progressing well, he added, “There’s too much risk involved to allow a delay in the execution of the sentence.”
Green must serve the entirety of the four-year sentence, and once released will be under three years of post-release control supervision.
Another Hillsboro man, Chaz J. Rayburn, 26, was also sentenced to prison Wednesday for third-degree felony unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.
Rayburn, who pleaded guilty last month, will serve 12 months in prison for the offense and will be required to register as a Tier II sex offender every 180 days for the next 25 years. Upon the completion of his prison sentence, Rayburn will be under five years of post-release control.
In other proceedings, Robin Renee Neal, 35, pleaded guilty to aggravated possession of methamphetamine, a fifth-degree felony. She will be sentenced next month following the completion of a presentence investigation.
Harold R. Chaney Jr., aka Rick Chaney Jr., 25, pleaded guilty to fourth-degree felony wrecking and was admitted into the diversion program.
If Chaney successfully completes the program, the charge against him will be dismissed, Coss said.
Prosecutor Anneka Collins said the diversion program is also the plan for Chaney’s co-defendant, Lance T. Higgins, 27.
The pair was indicted in December after sinking a boat at Rocky Fork Lake.
On Wednesday, Collins said both men sunk the boat, which belonged to Higgins, by pulling the boat’s plug and letting it sink. But Collins said they left a for sale sign on the boat with a phone number on it.
She said Higgins had wanted to sell the boat but had been unable to get rid of it.
Collins said both men have been “very cooperative and truthful” about what they did.
In a Tuesday proceeding, Harold W. Davis, 27, pleaded guilty to possession of heroin and theft by deception, both fourth-degree felonies, and will be sentenced next month.
Ten months on each count to run consecutively was recommended by the state.