SOUTH BEND — It was a lively Superior Court docket on Nov. 5, with higher-level criminal offenses highlighting several cases.

One defendant may have picked up his third felony charge while out on release, while other cases kept up the tempo, with one defendant appearing to be trying to stall her sentencing, according to the judge.

Judge Don Richter was away, and substitute judge Commissioner Douglas Goelz sat at the bench and was assisted by Madam Administrator Emma Rose. Prosecutor Michael Rother, Chief Deputy Prosecutor Tracey Munger and Senior Deputy Prosecutor Joe Faurholt took seats at the prosecution’s table.

Attorneys David Arcuri, David Hatch and Jason Arcuri took their respective seats at the defense table.

Richard W. BrookingAlready facing two separate cases for burglary, Richard W. Brooking may have picked up another one, according to the prosecution. After yet another incident at Okie’s Thriftway Market in Ocean Park, he was back behind bars and is represented by Hatch.

The hearing began with Munger noting Brooking had a new charge set to the prosecutor’s office for a filing decision, his second since his original arrest. Goelz requested Munger raise her hand to solemnly swear she would “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth” to explain the potential new charge.

According to Munger, on Nov. 4, a female drove Brooking to Okie’s to pick up some items for her, but he apparently decided to steal the items instead of paying for them with the money she provided. He had already had previous issues with the store and had been formally trespassed and forbidden from stepping onto the property.

The incident also got the female driver into hot water, as she was wanted in association with another crime in Ocean Park where a duo broke into the Ocean Park Retreat Center and stole ice cream.

In response to the potential new charge, and subsequent potential violation of his pretrial release conditions to refrain from committing additional crimes, Munger requested his bail be increased to $30,000 for both of his previous cases, up from the previous $10,000 bail on each.

Goelz and Hatch questioned the legitimacy of the claims against Brooking in the new incident, but Munger noted the manager positively identified him and the incident was caught on security camera.

Goelz increased Brooking’s bail to $30,000 for both of his filed cases.

In the previous cases, Brooking was initially released on his own personal recognizance before committing another crime and then was bailed out.

Mary R. StephansNearly three months after pleading to two separate charges in Superior Court for second-degree identity theft and in district court for bail jumping, Mary R. Stephans was present inside the courtroom for a sentencing hearing for the felony charge alongside her attorney, Arcuri.

Arcuri immediately addressed the court and requested the sentencing be set over to Dec. 17 so that his client could enter into inpatient substance abuse treatment. He noted that she had previously tried, but, due to insurance issues, was unable to complete it and was finally able to get accepted into a facility.

However, she did not have a current bed date.

Goelz did not appear thrilled with the request, stating, “it seems like she’s been sitting on it and not taking it seriously,” regarding her getting treatment and completing her potential sentence.

“You better thank Ms. Munger,” Goelz said. “In my mind, you just need to go to jail. She’s taking a chance on you, better than me.”

He granted the defense’s request to set over the hearing to Dec. 17 and is expected to prove she completed the treatment.

Tyson F. JonesTyson F. Jones was expected to be present for a review hearing to provide proof that he had completed a 10-day jail sentence, but according to Faurholt not only was he not present, but there had been no documentation the sentence was completed.

Faurholt requested that the court issue a $10,000 warrant for Jones’ arrest.

However, a caller on Zoom was brought into the hearing, and Jones identified himself to the court. He noted that he was unsure what was going on since the late Harold Karlsvik was his attorney, and they had discussions about other ways to resolve his sentence.

According to Jones, he is currently working in California and unable to complete his sentence in jail. Goelz gave him two more months to complete his sentence or face further criminal issues in court.

Duane M. SullivanFacing two charges for first-degree burglary from bizarre incidents this past summer in Ocean Park, Duane M. Sullivan’s trial is quickly approaching on Nov. 23-24. He was present for a trial confirmation hearing along with his attorney Hatch.

Hatch informed the court that he was prepared for trial, as did the prosecution. Another issue arose, however, as Sullivan’s fiance had posted bail the night before, yet he remained in jail. Munger and Hatch noted it was the first they were made aware of as well as the court.

According to Goelz, the court would quickly address the issue to release him if the bail had indeed been reached. He was released a short time later and will next appear for his trial dates.

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