2008-12-18 / Front Page

Two Get Prison Sentences

Chanin Rotz-Mountz STAFF WRITER

A Hancock, Md., man and a Big Cove Tannery resident were sentenced last Tuesday in connection with two unrelated incidents involving a Warfordsburg area convenience store heist and the indecent assault of a teenage girl.

Nineteen-year-old Nathan Lee Skidmore of Hancock was ordered by Court of Common Pleas Judge Carol L. Van Horn to complete between four months and 23 months in the Franklin County Prison after entering a guilty plea to one misdemeanor count of theft by unlawful takingmovable property.

Skidmore, who was represented by defense attorney J. Gregory Hannigan, was originally charged with robbery, criminal conspiracy, theft, reckless endangerment and simple assault by physical menace as a result of the armed holdup of the Warfordsburg based Exxon on July 31, 2007. Approximately $1,711.11 in cash was stolen from the store's cash registers and from a drawer held in the business' back office.

A jury was unable to come to a conclusive answer on Skidmore's involvement during the robbery. As a result of the hung jury, charges against Skidmore were refiled. He opted to enter a guilty plea in late October. At the time, he told court officials he drove to the store and took money from a cash register operated during the evening hours by store employee Joshua Crouse and the drawer stored in the back office.

Crouse, of the Needmore area, was also charged in conjunction with the robbery. Charges of robbery, criminal conspiracy and theft by unlawful taking-movable property were waived, and he is reportedly awaiting trial.

In the meantime, Rodney Eugene Hull of Big Cove Tannery appeared in court last Tuesday for sentencing on one misdemeanor count each of indecent assault and the corruption of minors. Hull had originally been charged by investigators with the Pennsylvania State Police, Mc- Connellsburg substation, with three counts each of the corruption of minors, indecent assault without the consent of another and indecent assault of a person less than 16 years of age.

The charges against Hull stem from three incidents involving a 13-year-old girl between July 4 and July 29 at a Thompson Township residence. Hull reportedly inappropriately touched the girl through and under her clothing. After the final episode, the 31-year-old man apologized to the victim for what he had done.

Hull was sentenced by Judge Van Horn on December 9 to between one month and 11 months in the Franklin County Prison for indecent assault and an additional six to 12 months for the corruption of minors

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