The Pershing County 11th Judicial Court met on Wednesday, July 7, with Judge Jim Shirley presiding.



Sentencing hearings

At his arraignment on May 16, Corey Jonathan Light pleaded guilty to domestic battery by strangulation.

“I strangled my wife. I committed domestic battery by choking her. I grabbed her by the neck, picked her up and put her down on the ground,” he said.

At Wednesday’s sentencing hearing, defense attorney Steve Cochran observed that this was Light’s first felony. Further, the victim needed no medical attention. “It was the location of where he grabbed her that made it a felony,” he said.

“I made a mistake. I want to move on from this. I lost my wife from this incident. People make mistakes. We’re human,” the defendant said.

The judge gave Light 24-60 months in prison, suspended, with probation not to exceed two years, the maximum allowed. He will receive 85 days’ credit for time served. Light must have no contact with the victim, either in person or electronically.  

The judge exonerated Light’s bail and ordered his release from jail. 

Kendra Lee Grenz faced sentencing for battery. She retained defense attorney Massey Mayo Case. The judge gave Grenz a suspended sentence with diversion and one day of credit for time served.

When Grenz completes diversion, she can come back to court and withdraw the conviction.

According to the terms of the plea agreement, Grenz must pay $750 in restitution, complete drug court and fulfill other requirements.



At his arraignment on May 16, Garrett Don Cooney pleaded guilty to possessing a controlled substance, methamphetamine.  

On Wednesday, defense attorney Kyle Swanson said Cooney applied to the Elko drug court as ordered. However, they turned him down because he did not have a job. 

The attorney pointed out that Cooney had just had major surgery on his knee and is unable to work. Swanson said he was baffled by the decision and will follow up. 

“The idea was to put my client in a diversion program with a drug court component. This is a mandatory probation case. I got the reasons for denial yesterday,” he said.

Judge Shirley granted one year of probation, conditional on Cooney’s admission to drug court. 



Probation Violation Hearings

Michael Anthony Carroll admitted to some of the allegations contained in his probation violation report and denied others. He returns to court for sentencing on July 25.

Defense attorney Robert Dolan represented Maggie Kathleen Gallagher

by phone. He said she absconded from the Reno Sparks Gospel Mission and her whereabouts are unknown. The judge issued a no-bail bench warrant for her arrest.



Michael Richard Prather, of Calif., was not present for his probation violation hearing. Cochran said Prather was unable to get a ride to court. The judge continued the hearing until Jul. 25. If Prather does not show up, he will issue a bench warrant.



The Pershing County Drug Court evicted Daniel Leroy McGuinness. As a result, the Division of Parole and Probation filed a violation report. 

Judge Shirley decided to incarcerate McGuinness in the Pershing County Jail until his next hearing on July 25. Steve Evenson asked if his client could report to the jail at 5 p.m. The judge declined. “I’ve done that before and get bit every single time by people running and not appearing,” he said.





Arraignments

Roy Matthew Fulkerson pleaded not guilty to allegations of child neglect and endangerment with substantial bodily harm. The alleged incident occurred on May 25, 2022. Fulkerson has been in jail since his arrest with bail set at $65,000. 

Defense attorney Steve Cochran asked for a bail reduction. The judge advised him to file a motion. He set the trial for Aug. 8 through Aug. 10.



Joshua Ene Keamohuli, 32, pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a felon. The charges stem from a traffic stop on May 10. In exchange for the guilty plea, the DA’s Office will file no further charges against Keamohuli or his spouse.

The offense carries a penalty of 12-72 months but is also probatable. 

The judge sentences Keamohuli on Sept. 9. Cochran asked for an OR release. The judge advised him to file a motion.

“I need to weigh the dangers he may pose to the community,” he said. “We’ll come back on July 25th to discuss release.”



Alfred Happy Junior II pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit battery, a gross misdemeanor punishable by one year in jail. Kyle Swanson and Bryce Shields haven’t completed their discussions yet. The judge set a status hearing for Aug. 15.