A preliminary hearing held for a Greenfield woman in the Hillsboro Municipal Court on Thursday found that the state met its burden of proof and that her case could be bound over to a grand jury.
As previously reported by The Times-Gazette, Melissa Dunlow (a.k.a. Penwell), 46, Greenfield, faces a third-degree felony charge of intimidating a witness.
On Thursday, the state, represented by assistant prosecutor James Roeder, questioned two witnesses, the alleged victim, a juvenile, and a relative of hers.
During the relative’s testimony, she said that the alleged victim previously admitted to a charge in the juvenile court. She said that the alleged victim had since been subpoenaed in a case involving a different juvenile. That juvenile is a relative of Dunlow’s.
She then said that she and the alleged victim had been at the Greystone Motel on Sept. 18 when Dunlow went through the parking lot, left, and then came back. She testified that Dunlow said, “Yeah, I know where you are at,” and then addressed the juvenile.
During cross-examination by defense attorney Conrad Curren, she said Dunlow told the juvenile, “‘You had better not testify against (the other juvenile) or else,’ or ‘You will pay,’ or something to that effect.”
Curren then asked her how the dispute between her and Dunlow on Sept. 18 began. She said, “I wouldn’t call it a dispute. I’d call it harassment.”
The alleged victim was then called to the stand. She also described admitting to a charge in the juvenile court and then being subpoenaed in the other juvenile’s case. She also said that Dunlow had come to the Greystone Motel and addressed her in a way that she perceived as a threat.
Curren asked the alleged victim why she felt threatened. She described Dunlow’s statement, in which she allegedly told her not to testify “or else.”
“But what she said didn’t stop you from going to court?” Curren asked.
“No,” the alleged victim said.
Following the hearing, Hillsboro Municipal Court Judge David H. McKenna said that the state met its burden of proof and that probable cause was found. Dunlow’s case will be bound over to a grand jury.
The judge added that with this case there was also “probable cause to believe (Dunlow) has violated the law.”
As such, she was found guilty of a probation violation. Records showed that she was previously convicted of fourth-degree misdemeanor fishing without a license. A previously suspended 15 days in jail were imposed.
Reach Sarah Allen at 937-393-3456, ext. 1680, or on Twitter @SarahAllenHTG.