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Arraignments held in copper wiring theft cases

Three West Virginia men accused in connection with the theft of copper wiring and tools were arraigned Wednesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

Brian C. Hatcher, 22, of Hurricane, was arraigned on charges of receiving stolen property, open burning and prohibited acts. He pleaded not guilty through his attorney, J.T. Holt.

Judge D. Scott Bowling allowed a $3,500 surety bond posted in Lawrence County Municipal Court to continue and added a $20,000 own recognizance (OR) bond to it.

His alleged cohort, Christopher Collins, 27, of Ona, was arraigned on those same charges and one count of illegal use of drug paraphernalia.

He pleaded not guilty through his attorney, David Reid Dillon. Bowling allowed a $2,500 surety bond posted in Lawrence County Municipal Court to continue and added a $20,000 OR bond to it.

A third man, Michael D. Graybeal II, 24, of Huntington, was arraigned on charges of receiving stolen property, open burning and prohibited acts as well as charges of possession of drug paraphernalia and misdemeanor theft. He pleaded not guilty through his attorney, Mike Gleichauf. Bowling allowed a $5,000 surety bond posted in Lawrence County Municipal Court to continue and added a $20,000 OR bond to it.

All three men were arrested in late August after callers complained to Lawrence County Sheriff’s deputies about the smell of burning electric cables in their County Road 107 Proctorville neighborhood.

Deputies allegedly found the three men burning the coating off copper cables. The three men allegedly told deputies they found the copper cables. A search of their campsite uncovered tools that were determined to have been stolen from Huntington as well as drug paraphernalia.

Also Wednesday, Michael Johnson, 52, of 8427 State Route 243, South Point, was arraigned on one count of illegal cultivation of marijuana. Bowling set a $50,000 OR bond and ordered Johnson to return to court Nov. 30 for a pretrial conference.

Bowling set a Dec. 19 trial date for Jeffrey Leffingwell, 25, of 55 Township Road 1309, Proctorville. Leffingwell is charged with one count of burglary.

A trial date was also set for Terry Gibson, 21, of Flatwoods Ky. Gibson will stand trial Dec. 12 for one count of carrying a concealed weapon.