BUCKHANNON, W.Va. – The Upshur County Grand Jury has released the indictments for the September 2019 term, including multiple people facing child neglect charges.
A total of 35 people were indicted, including a Buckhannon woman accused of driving under the influence while her 8-year-old son was in the vehicle in August. Officers said Brandi Morris, 33, struck a vehicle after crossing the center line while her son was in the car and was determined by police to be under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Morris has been indicted on one count of child neglect causing serious bodily injury and one count of driving under the influence causing seriously bodily harm.
Also among those indicted was a Buckhannon man who police said left another man hospitalized following an altercation. Steven Arbogast, 38, is accused of punching another in the face multiple times, causing the man to sustain a broken nose, black eye, deep cut to the forehead and several large knots around his face. Arbogast has been indicted on one count of malicious assault and two counts of battery on a law enforcement officer.
A Buckhannon man who Upshur County deputies said broke into a business while wielding an AR-15 rifle in August has also been indicted. Eric Rowan, 24, is accused of breaking into 2nd Amendment Supplies in Buckhannon in August. Rowan has been indicted on one charge of breaking and entering a building other than a dwelling and one count of destruction of property.
A Rock Cave couple who deputies found asleep in a vehicle with methamphetamine and a small nude child in the back seat in Tennerton in May have also been indicted. Ciera Jones, 25, and Codey Jones, 29, were awoken in their car by employees in the parking lot of Tractor Supply by deputies, according to court documents.
Deputies said that when they woke the couple up, they found a purse within reach of a young naked child that contained Oxycodone pills, which Ciera Jones admitted to taking without a prescription. Both Ciera and Codey Jones have been indicted on two counts of child neglect creating a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury.
An Adrian couple who deputies said made their two young children get out of their car seats and sit on the floor of the vehicle so their friends could get in the back seat have also been indicted. Deputies pulled over the vehicle of Bradley Bennett, 32, and Laura Smith, 30, and discovered a 2-year-old boy and 4-year-old boy wedged on the floorboard of the vehicle between Smith’s legs. Bennett and Smith have been indicted on two counts of child neglect creating a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury.
Also among those indicted include an Elkins woman who is accused of making sexual contact with a 16-year-old boy. West Virginia State Police said Patricia Wilson, 25, was acting as the caretaker for a 16 year old boy when she touched his genitals for about five minutes while in her vehicle outside of Union Elementary School. Wilson has been indicted on one count of sexual abuse by a parent, guardian or person in position of trust.
To read the full list of indictments, click here.