Timothy Gene Deboer came to the 11th Judicial court for a sentencing hearing.
Timothy Gene Deboer came to the 11th Judicial court for a sentencing hearing.

The 11th Judicial court convened on Monday, Mar. 2.

Timothy Gene Deboer appeared for a sentencing and eligibility hearing.  Brian Taylor came from the Division of Parole and Probation. Public defender Steve Cochran represented the defendant.

“We are asking that Mr. Deboer be found eligible for 453 diversion due to his limited criminal history and the nature of the charges against him,” said Cohran. Deboer had previously pleaded guilty to- possession of a controlled substance. 

The public defender argued that  the  limited crimes on Deboer’s record stemmed from addiction issues. He acknowledged that Deboer walked away from the Salvation Army treatment program in Reno. However, rather than absconding, Deboer reported to the Division of Parole and Probation. He actively engaged in the presentencing phase of treatment with the Sixth Judicial Court. The State agreed not to oppose the defendant’s application for diversion.

The judge suspended the proceedings and found Deboer eligible for diversion. His probation will not exceed three years. He must complete the Sixth Judicial drug court program in Winnemucca and pay $88 in court fees at a rate of $22 a month.

Under 453 diversion, Deboer can withdraw his guilty plea if successful. If he fails, the underlying prison sentence remains on the table.

“I expect you to do well,” said the judge. “You can’t walk away from this program without adverse consequences.” Deboer thanked the judge for the opportunity. 

Jacob Paul Gallagher, 37, faced arraignment on charges of discharging a firearm into a structure. The incident occurred in Dec. 2018. According to court records, six people occupied the residence at the time of the event. 

Gallagher retained Steve Evenson as his defense attorney.

“My client was not doing well that night for a variety of reasons which will come out at sentencing,” said Evenson. “There were some defenses available, however, due to the lack of a certain result at trial,  the number of offenses potentially committed and the potential penalties on those offenses Mr. Gallagher felt it in his best interest to move forward.”

The defendant, a longtime Lovelock resident, pleaded no contest due to his limited memory of the event. For purposes of sentencing, the court treats a no-contest plea the same as a guilty plea.

In exchange for the no contest plea, the district attorney dismissed the remaining charges and won’t file any additional ones. DDA Banks explained that the offense carries a possible penalty of one to six years in prison. The judge also has the option of granting probation. Both sides of the bench are free to argue at sentencing on May 4. 

Judge Shirley adjusted Gallagher’s testing protocol. The defendant hopes to travel with his family, a supportive presence in the courtroom.

“My client has done well for a long time now, and it’s also a good idea to see how he’s going to perform before sentencing,” said Evenson.

Jesus Alberto Cruz, 23, arrived at the courthouse in jail garb and without counsel because his former attorney, Todd Plimpton, has ceased practicing law. However, Cochran represented Cruz in the justice court and said he would continue to do so.

Cruz graduated from PCHS in 2015 with letters in baseball, basketball and football. On Monday, March 2, 2020, he quietly admitted testing positive for opiates, tramadol, and heroin on multiple occasions during his probation for drug-related offenses. In exchange for the guilty plea, the State, represented by Todd Banks, amended the charges from the felony to the gross misdemeanor level. Cruz also admitted to other violations, including failure to complete drug court. According to Nevada law, Judge Jim Shirley has three options. He can reinstate Cruz on probation under the same or different terms. Alternatively, he could give Cruz a dishonorable discharge, sort of a divorce from the legal system, a parting of ways. If Cruz came to court again, judges would frown at this status and be less likely to consider Cruz as a candidate for probation. 

Or the judge could order Sheriff Jerry Allen to take Cruz into custody, imposing the underlying one to four year state prison sentence. Cochran asked for more time to determine how much credit for time served the defendant should get. “Some digging needs to be done,” he said. The public defender plans to ask for 55 days. The court sentences Cruz on April 5. The judge remanded him to custody.

Other 11th Judicial cases —

Mark Rinaldo Risi appeared in court with his privately retained attorney, Karena Dunn, of Reno. He came for an arraignment, facing charges of being an ex-felon in possession of a firearm, a nine millimeter.  According to court records, a Washoe County court convicted Risi of a felony on Jun. 18, 2000.

Risi also faced allegations of possessing methamphetamine. Both incidences allegedly occurred at Burning Man on Aug. 26, 2019. Risi pleaded not guilty.

If the State proves its case, Risi could face one to six years in prison for possessing the gun and one to four for the controlled substances. Each charge also carries possible fines of up to $5,000. Due to the defendant’s clean record, probation is mandatory on the drug charge. It’s also on the table with the firearm charge.

The lawyers anticipate a two to three day jury trial. It takes place July 13 – July 15.

Michelle Gutierrez, of Shurz, failed to appear for her last hearing, so the judge ordered a bench warrant. On Monday, Guttierrez came to court from jail for sentencing.

“Her inability to appear for court is more a manifestation of her level of indigency than a desire to not comply with court orders,” said DDA Banks. He agreed not to oppose Gutierrez’s application for 453 diversion.

The judge found Gutierrez eligible for diversion. Her probation will not exceed 36 months. 

Gutierrez must pay $88 in court fees at $22 a month. The judge did not assess a public defender’s fee.

He released the defendant to the Western Regional Drug Court program.

Lindsey Morgan Guzman, 27, pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine. The incident occurred on July 25, 2019, in Pershing County. Rendal Miller represented the defendant. In exchange for the guilty plea, the DA’s office will not oppose Guzman’s application for 453 diversion. She returns for a sentencing and eligibility hearing on May 4.

DDA Banks explained that the Category E felony is punishable by one to four years in prison, fines of up to $5,000 or a combination of both. However, due to Guzman’s clean record, she qualifies for mandatory probation. The judge did not enter the conviction. Guzman returns for sentencing on May 4.

Justin Dean Bates, 35, came to court from the Pershing County jail. Steve Cochran represents the defendant. DA Bryce Shields argued on behalf of the State of Nevada. Cochran filed a motion for Bates’s release on his own recognizance. The DA opposed the motion.

At a previous hearing, Bates pleaded no contest to the felony coercion of a child. The victim was 11 years old at the time. The judge lowered Bates’s bail to $20,000. He returns to court for sentencing on April 6. If he bails out, Bates must have no contact with the victim, said the judge.

Steve Evenson agreed to take Todd Plimpton’s place in the case of the State of NV versus Stephanie Lorrain Mobley-Roth. She’ll return to court for a continued hearing.

Bryce Jordan Hilleshiem came to court for his arraignment. Jenny Hubach, of Reno, represented the defendant. At her request, the judge continued the hearing until April 20.