Defendants reject plea deals

Friday, February 20, 2009

On Thursday, defendants in two separate Putnam County Circuit Court cases rejected plea offers extended to them by the State of Indiana.

Tonya Denise Corley of Indianapolis and Michael L. Campbell II of Greencastle, both 34, opted to have their cases proceed to jury trials.

Corley was arrested after a Dec. 30 incident in which she allegedly attempted to traffic drugs and other contraband during at visit with an inmate at the Putnamville Correctional Facility.

Corley, who also uses the last names Robinson and Allmon, is charged with Class B felony dealing in cocaine, Class C felony trafficking with an inmate, Class D felonies dealing in marijuana, possession of cocaine and possession of marijuana and Class A misdemeanor trafficking with an inmate.

Under the terms of the rejected plea agreement, all other charges against Corley would have been dismissed in exchange for a guilty plea on the Class B felony. Sentencing would have been left open to the court, which means the judge could have given Corley the maximum sentence of 20 years for the charge.

Judge Matthew Headley set Corley's jury trial for May 20, with a final pretrial conference date of April 30. Any further plea offers in the case must be filed no later than April 23.

Corley has been in the Putnam County jail since her arrest, unable to post the $15,000 cash plus $15,000 surety set for her by Putnam County Circuit Court Judge Matthew Headley on Dec. 31. A Feb. 5 request for bond reduction was denied.

If convicted on all charges, she could face as many as 38 years in prison.

Campbell is a former Putnamville Correctional Facility inmate. He is now at the Wabash Valley Level 4 Facility in Carlisle, where he is serving time for battery and armed robbery convictions out of Marion County. His earliest possible release date is listed at the Indiana Department of Corrections Web site as Feb. 3, 2012.

The charges now pending against Campbell -- Class D felonies criminal gang activity and conspiracy to commit battery resulting in bodily injury, along with a possible habitual offender designation -- stem from an October incident at Putnamville in which Aaron W. Wood, 30, assaulted Putnamville Sgt. Kevin Clark, Putnamville executive assistant Alisia Lawrence said, supposedly at the behest of Campbell.

Lawrence said Campbell is a confirmed member of the Aryan Brotherhood, a white prison gang with about 15,000 members in and out of prison across the United States.

According to statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, although the gang makes up less than 1 percent of the prison population, it is responsible for up to 26 percent of murders in the federal prison system.

The plea extended to Campbell called for him to plead guilty to the battery charge and serve the maximum sentence of three years, all executed time.

Headley set Campbell's jury trial for June 17, with a final pretrial date of May 28. Any further plea agreements in the case must be filed no later than May 21.

Due to the number of witnesses expected to be called in the case, Putnam County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Don Van DerMoere requested at least two days be allotted for the trial.

Campbell was sentenced March 14 to five years, 11 months and 29 days for Class C felony battery. At the time, he was already serving two separate two-year sentences for two counts of Class B felony armed robbery, both of which he was convicted for on Oct. 18, 2007.

Campbell's criminal history also includes prison stints for two other Class B felony armed robbery charges on Aug. 19, 2003. He was sentenced to seven years each on those convictions and was released from prison in May 2007.

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  • Is someone looking a gift horse in the mouth?

    -- Posted by Xgamer on Fri, Feb 20, 2009, at 6:14 AM
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