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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Superior Court Cases
Afternoon Session August 17, 2015

Superior Court for Macon County was called into session for the afternoon of August 17, 2015 with the Honorable William H. Coward presiding.

Macon Media and The Franklin Press were the only local media organizations with reporters physically present in this session of court.

This article contains a list of dispositions and decisions in chronological order, augmented with with information from notes taken while the court was in session. Any errors are mine and all defendants are presumed innocent until their cases have been adjudicated. Where possible, hyperlinks have been added that may help promote understanding of the legal process in North Carolina. I have also not reported material that identifies the victims or family members of sexual abuse victims.

Please remember that I am an amateur in reporting on the court system. If you see errors in my reporting, let me know at or send me a private (or public message on my Macon Media facebook account at

Here are links to some documents to help you understand how the court system works and some of the legal jargon in the coverage:


Mann, Logan 14CRS51174 Assault by strangulation, assault on a female, assault in the presence of a minor
Represented by Bryson, Crystal

A plea of Not Guilty was entered and a trial date set for December 14, 2015.

Royse, Christopher
Represented by Beyer, Nikki

Case was continued to November 16, 2015 for another administrative setting.

Holt, Raymond 14CRS050188 Sex Offender/Child Premises
Represented by

Called and failed to appear. Order for Arrest was issued and bond raised to $30,000 cash secured. (The defendant appeared later in the session and the order was struck)

Timpton, Jeremy Probation Violation (In arrears over financial obligations)
Represented by

The defendant was given an extra 12 months of probation. (I could not find this case on the calendar, perhaps I did not understand the name of the defendant)

Roberts, David 14CRS050498, 14CRS050499, 14CRS 050500 Third degree sexual exploitation of a minor
Represented by Devereux, Sean

Case continued to 11-16-2015.

Holt, Raymond 14CRS050188 Sex Offender/Child Premises

Case was continued to 11-16-2015 at which time the State instructed the defendant to plea guilty or go to trial. The judge ordered the arrest order rescinded.

Moses, Chad Probation violation (could not find this case on the calendar)

Found in violation. Sentenced to 90 day CRV then terminate probation.

Jorge, Susan (could not find this case on the calendar)
Represented by (not represented)

The judge appointed Nikki Beyers and set next appearance at 11-16-2015.

Ward, Roberta Probation Violation (could not find this case on the calendar)
Represented by (waived right to an attorney)

Judge extended probation 12 months.

Hathcock, Preston 14CRS050590 Breaking and/or Entering
Represented by Beyers, Nikki

Continued to 11-16-2015.

The reporter for The Franklin Press arrived in the courtroom.

McKinney, Gavin 15CRS050552, 15CRS050553 Forgery and Obtain Property by False Pretenses and Uttering Forged Instrument
Represented by Neumann, Scott

Sentenced to 2 consecutive sentences 6 to 14 months with 26 days jail credit, active sentence suspended for a term of 24 months on probation, pay $200 fine, restitution to victim for checks, have no contact with the victim and $240 for attorney fees.

McConnell, Jeffrey 15CRS05065, 15CRS050652 Possess firearm by a felon, possession stolen firearm
Represented by Norwood, Gina

Continued to 11-16-2015.

Frazier, Steel 15CRS050759, 14CRS 050760, 14CRS050761 2nd Degree Burglary, Stolen good, larceny after B&E, larceny of Motor Vehicle, Possession of Stolen Motor vehicle
Represented by Norwood, Gina

Continued to 11-16-2015.

Burr, Jerimy 14CRS050881 Traffick in Methamphetamine and other related charges
Represented by Lay, Frank

Continued to 11-16-2015.

*note* There were several cases at this time I missed because I did not hear a name or complete case number called out as they were handling them rapid-fire.

Jones, Christopher (The case number was not on my calendar) Conspiracy to commit felony, possession of methamphetamine, etc.
Represented by Lepre, Stephanie

The defendant was sentenced and ordered to pay $7,409 in restitution.

10 to 21 months suspended for 36 months probation. Defendant sentenced to serve 90 days minus 17 days jail credit. Ordered to pay $900 in attorney fees, $7,409 in restitution, serve 48 hours community service, enter treatment for substance abuse and have no contact with co-defendant or victim during term of probation.
(This was a complicated sentence, so I have likely got part of it wrong).
This case resulted from the theft of the the days receipts of Cowee Convenience Store on August 4, 2014.

Hensley, Adam 14CRS50281 2nd Degree Murder
Represented by Belser, David

The defendant entered a plea of guilty according to a plea arrangement with the State and was sentenced to 48-67 months with 16 days jail credit with recommended work release.

This case resulted from the March 9, 2014 death of Larry Wilt during a fight at 21 Kirkland Road. More on the incident can be seen at **note** The audio will not play because DivShare, where the audio is being housed, is undergoing restructuring. I have no idea when, or if, the audio will become available again.

Notes from the courtroom

The judge noted that the class D Felony the defendant is charged with exposes him to a possible 204 month maximum sentence.

The judge noted the plea arrangement and sentencing guidelines put the defendant in the mitigated range for a 48-70 month sentence (the judge later corrected the 70 to 67).

assistant District Attorney Eric Bellas, prosecuting for the State, reported the facts of the case for the record. They include:

On March 9, 2014 the Macon County Sheriff Office was called out to to a fight in progress at 21 Kirkland Road. The defendant was found with blood on his face and clothing. Larry Wilt was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

On March 10, 2014 an autopsy performed on the deceased found that the cause of death was several stab wounds.

Witnesses at the scene said the two were lifelong friends and had a disagreement while drinking and a fight started and escalated and moved outside. The State noted that the victim was stabbed with a weapon of opportunity after his nose was avulsed (bitten off).

He further reported that the defendant said he was defending himself and that witness testimony to investigators gave varying accounts of the incident, both implicating and exonerating the account of the defendant.

The mother of the victim made a statement to the court. She said the two 9Henskey and Wilt) had been friends for a long time. Most of her information on what happened came from Facebook and friends. She said that her son's children had no father and that her 6 year old grand daughter wanted to die so she could be with her daddy. She said Hensley just got back from the beach and has had rights and freedoms that have been denied her son, who she said walked away three times to avoid a fight the day he was killed.

David Belser, Attorney for the Defense, said this has been a horrible situation for the victim' family and for the defendant's family. He said Larry Wilt had lived with the Hensley's on and off since the 6th grade. He participated in family vacations and family reunions with the Hensley family.

He said the defendant had a good work history listing jobs held as a dishwasher and for a couple of paving companies. He said the Defense would like for the defendant to get work release at the earliest opportunity if it pleased the court.

The judge found the defendant guilty of a Class D Felony. Voluntary Manslaughter, and would be sentenced in the mitigated range because the mitigating factors outweighed aggravating factors. The sentence is 48-67 months, with credit for 16 days jail credit and work release would be recommended.

At this point, there was an outburst from someone sitting with the family of Larry Wilt. A young man shouted “How is this justice? I hope you wake up every morning and see your disfigured face.” The judge ordered the person removed from the court room.

The judge then continued with the sentence, requiring that a DNA sample be submitted.

Hensley was handcuffed and taken from the courtroom.

The judge directed the audience to exit in a peaceful manner or face 30 days in jail or a $500 fine. He noted that inside the courtroom is not the place to demonstrate against a verdict.

Court was dismissed for the day.