Cumberland Times-News

July 23, 2013

Town’s former mayor to stand trial for alleged misuse of purchase card

From Staff Reports
Cumberland Times-News

—  KEYSER, W.Va. — Former Ridgeley Mayor James Twigg will stand trial in Mineral County for alleged fraudulent use of a government-issued purchase card after a motion to dismiss the case was denied Monday in Mineral County Circuit Court.

Prosecuting Attorney Jay Courrier said the court ruled that a recent indictment of Twigg on theft charges was proper and that Mineral County has jurisdiction and venue to proceed in the case.

A status hearing in the case has been scheduled for Sept. 12 at 11 a.m.

Eight felony counts of fraudulent or unauthorized use of government-issued purchase cards were filed against Twigg in a grand jury indictment returned in May.

The charges relate to misuse of funds totaling more than $400, which Twigg has said that he has since reimbursed to the town of Ridgeley. Twigg has claimed that there was no criminal wrongdoing on his part.

The charges were filed following a state audit and an investigation by West Virginia State Police.

In another matter, a jury trial for Leo Regis Rodenhauser, 20, of Cumberland, was set for Sept. 24-25 in circuit court. A pretrial hearing has been scheduled for Sept. 12 at 3:30 p.m., Courrier said.

Rodenhauser was indicted by a Mineral County grand jury in January for reckless fleeing in a vehicle, two counts of fleeing from an officer causing bodily injury and two counts of fleeing from an officer causing property damage, misdemeanor.

Cpl. J.E. Whisner and Sgt. J.M. Droppleman of the Keyser detachment of the West Virginia State Police testified during a hearing in April in front of Judge Phil Jordan.

According to their testimony, the sheriff’s department set up a roadblock during the pursuit of the motorcyclist but the motorcyclist slowed down and was able to maneuver around it.

A Keyser Police 2011 Dodge Charger driven by Patrolman Jon Hudson, who was unaware of the roadblock, hit two parked cars in an effort not to strike the other law enforcement personnel in the roadway.

One of those cars struck a sheriff’s department cruiser.

Sheriff’s department Cpl. R.C. Reall and Hudson were both treated and released for injuries sustained during the accident.