Probation Violations And Arraignments Were The Themes In Custer County District Court

CUSTER COUNTY— It may be hot outside, but the AC was working perfectly on Thursday, July 18 in Custer County District Court. The majority of the criminal cases heard by Judge Karin Noakes dealt with probation, with a few other types of cases sprinkled throughout the morning.

Bryan Baker, 66 of Merna, was arraigned on one felony charge of 2nd degree assault (class II felony). Baker could be facing a maximum of 50 years in prison if found guilty of the alleged charge.

Jimmie Sipes, 45, was sentenced after being found guilty of violating his probation at a previous court hearing. After reviewing the pre-sentence report that was submitted to the court, both attorneys agreed that extending the probation would be the best for Sipes.

The pre-sentence investigation (PSI) showed that Sipes needs structure due to some developmental problems, which Sipes also agreed with. Judge Noakes agreed with both attorneys and ordered that Sipes serve five years of probation. With the probation and previous case, Sipes was also ordered to begin a payment plan as he owes $4,500 in restitution.

Dustin Farritor, 46 of Broken Bow, was scheduled for a pretrial hearing but will now be sentenced after admitting to violating his probation. Farritor was picked up for his 3rd DUI (class IIIA felony), where it was also aggravated (over .15 BAC), and is now looking at a possible three year prison term if sentenced to the maximum by law.

During the pretrial conference, Farritor admitted to disturbing the peace and also testing positive twice for alcohol in his system. An updated PSI was ordered and he will now appear for sentencing on September 5 at 10:15 AM.

Joshua Oels, 38 of Broken Bow, appeared in the afternoon and was admitted to drug court. According to Custer County Attonrey Steve Bowers, Oels would plead guilty to three of his charges and in exchange for those pleas would be admitted into drug court. Sentencing will now be suspended pending the failure or completion of drug court.