A court trial held in the Hillsboro Municipal Court on Thursday ended with a Hillsboro woman being found guilty of minor misdemeanor disorderly conduct by fighting in a public place.
Sharon Hamm, 41, represented herself during the trial.
The reported altercation occurred at a local apartment complex early last month, according to Judge David H. McKenna.
The other party reportedly involved in the altercation – Todd Booth, 26, Wyoming – was in the court earlier Thursday. He pled no contest to minor misdemeanor disorderly conduct and was found guilty. A $150 fine was suspended on the condition that he complete 30 hours of community service.
Hamm’s trial began with prosecutor Fred Beery calling Hillsboro Police Department Officer Chad Milligan as a witness.
During questioning, Milligan said that the altercation involved a TV. He added that Booth had reportedly been at the apartment for about four hours and had been invited there by Hamm.
Beery then asked, “They both admitted to you at the same time that they had been pushing each other?” Milligan confirmed that statement.
Hamm then questioned Milligan, asking if the 911 call placed that night was hung up. Milligan said he did not know the details of the call, as it would have been handled through dispatch.
Hamm then asked if there had been any marks on her body, or if she had told him that she had taken Booth’s car keys “because he was dragging me (with the vehicle).”
Milligan said he could not remember.
After showing Milligan a report of the incident, Hamm asked, “Did I tell you that I was shoved into a heater?”
Milligan said she had told him such.
She then asked if previously, HPD Captain Ron Priest had banned Booth from coming to her apartment. Milligan also confirmed that.
The prosecution rested, and Hamm then called a total of four witnesses, including a relative and three HPD officers.
During questioning, the relative said he had heard an argument and seen Booth and Ham struggling over the TV. He added that Hamm was pushed into the heater.
He also said he had seen marks on Hamm’s legs.
He added that Hamm had been on the phone and that based on the conversation, he thought she had called the police.
She then questioned HPD Sgt. Aaron Reynolds, asking: “Did I tell you why I had contact with (Booth’s) keys?”
Reynolds said that she reported that Booth dragged her with the car. Reynolds also said she had abrasions on her legs.
Next, she called HPD Captain Ron Priest to the stand. He said that he was not present at the time of the incident, but had been to the apartment previously.
Priest said, “I was called out there because you were having problems with Mr. Booth and you wanted him removed from the property.” He added that the apartment manager was also present at the time. He said that he had told Booth that if he came back to the apartment he could be charged with trespassing.
HPD Officer Larry Barker was also called to the stand, but since he did not become involved until after the incident, he could not provide additional information related to the charge.
Hamm then testified, saying that on the night of the incident, “I did not expect (Booth) to come.” She said that she told him to leave, and that he got angry, which is when he tried to take the TV.
Hamm said she then tried to stop him from taking the TV, and then called 911. She added that while trying to stop him, she was dragged by his car.
Beery then asked Hamm if she had any medical conditions, and she listed several.
He asked her, “You, with your disability, wrestled for a TV with a man … and you then pursued him to his vehicle and removed the keys from the vehicle?”
She said the altercation started with her against the wall and that if officers had arrived “five minutes earlier,” they would have found her cane knocked over in the parking lot and Booth dragging her.
When asked if she wanted Booth charged with assault, Hamm said, “To be honest, I think he deserves it.”
Beery waived his closing statement, and Hamm said, “I just wish it didn’t happen.”
McKenna then said that when Booth was previously in the court he said he and Hamm drove to court together. He then referenced Hamm saying that Booth “deserve(d)” to be charged with assault.
“It kind of undermines your credibility,” the judge said.
He added that there was “no question” that she had called 911, even if there was disagreement over whether or not Booth had been invited to her apartment.
He then said that “by (Hamm’s) own testimony,” she had gone outside and taken Booth’s keys.
“When you’re out where the cars are parked … and you get into it with him,” that is disorderly conduct by fighting in a public place, McKenna said.
She was found guilty and must pay $50 of a $150 fine.
Reach Sarah Allen at 937-393-3456, ext. 1680, or on Twitter @SarahAllenHTG.