Thief gets six months in jail |

Thief gets six months in jail

Staff Reports

A 19-year-old California man, sentenced in November after breaking into a Stateline liquor store with two codefendants, was ordered Monday to serve six months in Douglas County Jail for probation violations.

Joplin Rusty Ruebottom interrupted District Judge Michael Gibbons several times to ask that he be released from jail so he could work, and take care of his grandmother who has Alzheimer’s disease.

“Sir, I want to go home so bad. This isn’t fair,” Ruebottom said.

Gibbons also added $320 to Ruebottom’s restitution to cover the cost of returning him to Nevada after he failed to appear for two court dates.

The defendant said he didn’t have a telephone, and was unaware of the hearings.

He was sentenced last November after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary, and ordered to pay $589.15 restitution with the codefendants.

So far, Ruebottom has made three out of four payments.

“The court is not satisfied with your performance,” Gibbons said. “When you get probation, you have much less leeway.”

Gibbons ordered him to serve six months in jail, and gave him credit for 49 days in custody. He said Ruebottom could get off probation when he paid restitution in full.

“You have to take some responsibility,” Gibbons said.

Probation was reinstated Monday for a 23-year-old Gardnerville woman who asked for another chance because she’s severed all ties to her old way of life and wants to be a good mother to her 4-year-old child.

District Judge Michael Gibbons told Michelle Howard she would be on probation until August 2013 with no good-time credits.

“I hope the time you just served in jail got your attention,” Gibbons said.

He also ordered her to pay $250 a month restitution toward the $4,800 she and codefendant Lea Jaramillo owe their victims.

Jaramillo has absconded from probation.

“You’re left holding the bag,” Gibbons said. “You’re the only person out of everybody who is making payments.”

Howard said she was working at her father’s gas station and living with her son at her parents.

“I have decided to cut all ties to associates from the past,” she said. “I have chosen the path to be a mother and an adult.”

She and Jaramillo were charged with felony possession of stolen property after they were arrested in a car at Howard’s home in May 2010 loaded with the property reported missing following a series of vehicle burglaries in the Gardnerville Ranchos. The women said they had been associated with two men suspected of committing the robberies, but never charged.

Howard admitted not contacting her probation officer for nearly two years after she left Gardnerville for Las Vegas and Southern California.

She also was behind in her restitution and probation fees. She recently completed a 30-day sentence in Douglas County Jail for lying to a Douglas County deputy about her identity.

“We’ve been chasing her now for two years,” said prosecutor Tom Gregory. “She admitted obstruction of an officer which makes me believe what you’re hearing now is a show for the court. I don’t have a lot of confidence.”

He and probation officer Tami Matus recommend her probation be revoked.

Gibbons he was reinstating probation because he wanted the restitution paid, Howard was working and living with her parents in Gardnerville, and she was a single parent to her son.

“I know I’ll pay restitution, I know I’ll get it done,” Howard said. “I do have a lot of integrity. I made a lot of mistakes, but I learned from them.”

A 43-year-old Wellington man faces up to six years in prison and a $20,000 fine at his sentencing Aug. 28 after he admitted selling methamphetamine.

David Edward Price told District Judge Dave Gamble his unemployment ran out, and he needed money.

“I started selling drugs again to support myself,” he said.

He pleaded guilty to sales of a controlled substance.

Price was arrested Jan 26.

In exchange for his guilty plea, four charges of possession of controlled substance and possession of paraphernalia will be dismissed.

Price agreed not to seek a diversion program.