Archived Story

Men plead not guilty to sex crimes

Published 9:47am Friday, October 5, 2012

Two men accused of sex crimes against juveniles were arraigned Wednesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

William M. Morrison, 37, of 140 Private Drive 2482 County Road 1, South Point, pleaded not guilty to the first-degree rape of a 13-year-old girl. Morrison was represented by attorney J. T. Holt.

Judge Charles Cooper continued a $150,000 bond from municipal court and set a pretrial for Oct. 17.

According Lawrence County Sheriff Jeff Lawless, the alleged victim in the case called her father and said she had been raped by Morrison at the man’s home.

When the girl’s father went to the Morrison residence, Morrison allegedly fled in a vehicle. Morrison later turned himself into authorities.

Timothy Parsons, 43, of 1142 Raccoon Creek, Branchland, W.Va., pleaded not guilty to fourth-degree gross sexual imposition of a 16-year-old juvenile. Parsons was represented by attorney Luke Styer.

Cooper set bond at $20,000 cash or surety and scheduled a pretrial for Oct. 17.

In other cases:

• Joshua Burrett, 24, of 1010 Libby Lane, Barboursville, W.Va., was arraigned on one count of first-degree aggravated robbery. Burrett pleaded not guilty through his attorney J.T. Holt.

Cooper continued bond from a lower court and set a pretrial Oct. 17.

• Amber Craft, 26, of 2448 County Road 56, Ironton, was sentenced to three years in prison for third-degree tampering with evidence, fifth-degree possession of drugs and misdemeanor possession of drugs.

Counts of trafficking in drugs and attempted trafficking in drugs were dismissed as a part of the negotiated plea.

Craft pleaded guilty to the charges last month and was represented by attorney Chris Delawder.

• David Woodyard III, 19, of 213 Township Road 1163, Proctorville, tested positive for oxycodone. Cooper increased bond to $65,000.

• Marcus Birchfield, 35, of 514 N. Sixth St., Ironton, pleaded guilty to fifth-degree theft.

Cooper sentenced Birchfield to six months in prison with credit for time served.

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