Creekers continue cases into new year
By Linda Bentley | December 24, 2008
First offense DUI costly and cumbersome
CAVE CREEK – During the last pretrial session of the year for Cave Creek Municipal Court, some Creekers were granted continuances until the new year, including Gary and Jeri Rust,each charged with disorderly conduct and obstruction of a government operation or public servant, stemming from an altercation with former Cave Creek Deputy Marshal Bobby Hernandez over a civil sign ordinance violation for which they were never cited.
Attorney Ken Bemis was granted a continuance on behalf of Angela Burke, charged with theft of the former Cracked Crab Restaurant and providing false information to police, because the charges in Cave Creek Municipal Court appear to duplicate the charges pending in Maricopa County Superior Court.
Burke was recently granted a continuance in superior court as well, due to the parties “attempting to settle,” with a status conference set for Jan. 21.
In October, one of Burke’s superior court co-defendants, Severino Arceo Penara, an illegal alien, pled guilty to theft, an undesignated class 6 offense and was sentenced to 18 months probation, with the expectation he would be deported.
In November, Burke’s other co-defendant, Frank Bobelick, pled guilty to theft as a class 6 undesignated felony and was placed on probation for two years, which included two months incarceration to begin April 1, 2009.
On Dec. 16, Bobelick was cited in Scottsdale for threatening and intimidating with injury or damage to property and may have already violated his probation.
Charged with driving on a suspended license, no insurance and speeding, Brittany Tarver, who initially introduced herself to the town prosecutor as the wife of Justin Lunsford, the man charged with the murder of Elizabeth Hermann, was also granted a continuance, stating she believed she could get her fines paid off and her license reinstated by next month.
Leopoldo Hernandez Ayala, cited for driving with a license suspended/revoked/canceled and no rear license plate, chose to continue his case until next month as well, telling the town prosecutor he could get his suspended license resolved by then.
Others chose not to show up for their court appearance, including George Halvorsen, 22, who was cited for driving under the influence of drugs listed in A.R.S. 13-3401 or Metabolite.
Rodrigo Leon, who was cited for falsification of driver license or ID, no valid license, no insurance, failure to display legible plate and failure to appear (FTA) also no-showed.
Leon has FTA warrants in Phoenix for a 2006 citation issued for reckless driving and operator failure to show driver license or ID and, more recently, for a Dec. 5, 2008 citation for extreme DUI, refusal to stop at peace officer’s signal, operator failure to show driver license or ID, red light – failure to stop or remain stopped, failure to stop at stop sign, speed greater than reasonable and prudent to avoid a collision, open container of liquor and no registration in vehicle.
Armando Nogales also failed to appear after being cited for improper materials on windows and windshield, no valid license, no insurance, no registration and driving with license suspended/revoked/cancelled.
Nogales also has convictions for criminal trespass in the third degree in Avondale from 2006 and criminal trespass in the first degree in Goodyear from 2007, both of which resulted in jail sentences and fines.
Court appearances began with Laura Shutt, who pled guilty to DUI and was sentenced to the mandatory minimum of ten days in jail, with nine suspended providing she successfully completes an alcohol screening program, along with a fine totaling almost $2,500 and the installation of an ignition interlock device on her vehicle for one year, which will cost another $1,000.
When Luis Zepeda appeared before Judge George Preston for driving on a suspended license and obstructed view, he said his license was suspended by the state of California because he owed a fine there.
Preston said, “It sounds like you should not be driving right now until you get this taken care of.”
Zepeda was fined the mandatory minimum of $585 plus $20 in court costs.
Martin Del Real Lopez, who was found behind the wheel of a vehicle while intoxicated, appearing with Spanish Interpreter Marcella Walker, pled guilty to a reduced reckless driving charge.
Lopez was fined $1,620 in court costs and sentenced to three days in jail with credit for the three days already served.
Preston advised Lopez that pleading guilty could affect his immigration status or prevent him from ever becoming a citizen, which Lopez acknowledged as he waived his right to trial.
Justin Anderson pled guilty to a second offense DUI and received the mandatory minimum of 90 days in jail with 60 days suspended, providing he successfully completes an alcohol screening program, and 30 hours of community service.
Anderson was also fined $950 in court costs plus prison fund fees of $2,500. He too will be required to install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle he drives.
Preston advised Anderson his license would be suspended by MVD.
Anderson asked to be placed on work furlough, stating, “I have a full time job.”
Preston said he would note no objections but stated the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office handles work furlough requests.
Katherine Trompeter, 19, pled guilty to minor consumption of alcohol. She was fined $220 and ordered to attend an alcohol screening program.
Samuel Parker received a suspended sentence of 10 days in jail and placed on probation for two years for threatening and intimidating.
Preston complimented Parker, who was wearing a suit and tie, on his appearance.
Jesse Ferrier pled guilty to excessive speed. He was pulled over for doing 95 in a 45 zone.
Preston said he was amazed the officer didn’t charge him with reckless driving and fined him $300 plus $520 in court costs for a total of $820.
Giovana “GiGi” Guimaraes, originally charged with driving while impaired, improper lane change and speeding, pled guilty to a reduced charge of reckless driving with the other charges dismissed.
She was fined $356 plus $670 in court costs and ordered to attend an alcohol screening program.
Jason Murray pled guilty to an extreme DUI with a prior DUI. He also will need to make restitution, estimated at approximately $6,000, for the power pole and transformer he knocked down.
Murray was sentenced to the mandatory minimum of 120 days in jail with 60 days suspended and credit for six days served. Preston noted Murray lives in Tucson and said he would be eligible for work release and two-for-one time.
Preston fined Murray $2,750, ordered him to attend an alcohol screening program and perform 30 hours of community service.
MVD will suspend Murray’s license and will require him to install an ignition interlock device in his vehicle for one year when driving privileges are restored.
Photo: Gary and Jeri Rust were granted a continuance last week on charges of disorderly conduct and obstruction of a government operation or public servant issued by former Cave Creek Deputy Marshal Bobby Hernandez, after they got into a tiff with Hernandez over a civil sign ordinance violation for which they were never cited.
Photo by Linda Bentley