Bruce Jordan Hilleshiem
Bruce Jordan Hilleshiem

Pershing County’s 11th Judicial Court met on Monday, Aug. 31. Judge Jim Shirley presided over an assortment of arraignments, sentencings and review hearings. 

Lisa Brannon from the Division of Parole and Probation participated in the hearing by telephone. Deputy District Attorney Todd Banks represented the State of Nevada.

Lance Joseph Baijounas, 56 , pleaded guilty to one gross misdemeanor count of property destruction at his arraignment hearing. His attorney, Jenny Hubach, took part in the hearing by telephone.

Baijounas admitted to smashing the taillights of a  2019 GMC Yukon with a sledgehammer at Burning Man last summer. The damages amounted to between $250 and $5,000.

In exchange for the guilty plea, the State recommended a suspended sentence of 364 days with 12 months of formal probation. They also agreed to dismiss a felony count.

“I didn’t use my slow brain. I used my fast brain and reacted in the wrong way,” said Baijounas. “I meant no harm. They destroyed my property. I lashed out and destroyed theirs.”

DDA Todd Banks will notify the victim. The Division of Parole and Probation will prepare the presentencing investigation report. Judge Shirley sentences the defendant on Dec. 7. 

Bryce Jordan Hilleshiem, 31, pleaded guilty to domestic battery, second offense with substantial bodily harm, a Category C felony. He admitted that on May 18, 2019, he pushed his wife to the ground, breaking her pinky finger. 

Attorney Jenny Hubach took part in the arraignment by telephone.

Hilleshiem faces the possibility of one to five years in prison and fines of up to $10,000. However, in exchange, for the guilty plea, the State recommended up to three years of formal probation.

He was convicted of an earlier domestic battery in Pershing County on Mar. 3, 2016. A third domestic battery conviction within a seven year period is an automatic Category B felony, punishable by one to six years in prison.

“This is an enhanceable offense, meaning that if you commit any domestic batteries within seven years, they will be felonies,” explained the judge.

The Division of Parole and Probation has 60 days to prepare the presentencing investigation report, a tool that helps the sentencing judge reach a decision. Judge Shirley sentences Hilleshiem on Dec. 7.

Bruce Lee Malonson, 64, of North Hollywood, Calif., failed to appear for his court hearing. Malonson faces sentencing for driving under the influence, causing a death. He is represented by Steve Evenson. 

The single-vehicle rollover happened 14 miles west of Lovelock at about 8:20 a.m. on Mar. 5, 2018. Malonson’s Ford SUV left the pavement, traveled across the median and the westbound lanes of I-80 near mile marker 91. It crossed the north shoulder of the highway and overturned, ejecting the female passenger who was not wearing a seat belt. She died at the scene.

Initially, Malonson disputed his guilt, but he eventually pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, a Category D felony punishable by 1 – 4 years in prison and fines of up to $5,000.

Evenson said his client was unable to travel pending resolution of his medical issues. “He wants to get this over with, but he’s ailing medically. His ability to appear is in question,” he said.

The DA’s office set restitution at approximately $2,500. The judge sentences Malonson on Oct. 13. “He needs to be here that day,” he said.

Other hearings —

Justin Charles Bonham, 23, of Oreana, came to court for a sentencing hearing. Kyle Swanson represented him.

Earlier, at his arraignment, Bonham pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance. He’ll serve probation for up to three years with 54 days credit for time served. He must complete the Western Regional Diversion Program.

Oscar Yocundo Cruz, 24, came to court from jail for a pretrial conference. He denies setting the Nov. 17, 2019, fire that destroyed three buildings in Lovelock.

The judge set the trial for Nov. 9, 10 and 12. There will be a pretrial conference on Oct. 5. Steve Cochran represents Cruz.

Maggie Kathleen Gallagher, 28, came to court for a review hearing. 

“I’m giving you another chance,” said the judge. “You need to show the same dedication as when you helped the sports teams back in high school. I remember that well. No more running,” he said before ordering Gallagher into the Western Regional Mental Health Court in Fallon. Steve Cochran represents Gallagher. 

Kevin Andrew Lockett, 31, of Grass Valley, came to court for an arraignment, defended by Steve Cochran. Lockett pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine), a Category E felony. He’ll apply for diversion and formal probation with the drug court program.

Stephanie Lorraine Mobley-Roth came to court with her attorney Steve Evenson for a review hearing. She pleaded no contest to conspiracy to commit a crime, a legal fiction.  In reality, there was no conspiracy. 

“Miss Mobley-Roth maintains her legal and factual innocence,” Evenson explained. “These charges (possession of controlled substances and stolen property) stem from a difficult period in her life. She decided it’s in her best interest to accept the plea and the attached recommended penalty to resolve the charges.”

The plea will also allow Mobley Roth to recover personal property seized by the State. The court treats a no contest plea the same as a guilty plea.

Corey Patrick Olsen, of Reno, came to court for a sentencing hearing. Earlier, he pleaded guilty to gross misdemeanor charges of taking a vehicle without the owner’s permission. Steve Cochran represents Olsen.

The crime occurred on Dec. 11, 2019. According to court records, the car was a 1998 Isuzu Rodeo worth about $1,000.

The judge sentenced Olsen to 181 days in jail with 81 days credit for time served. He must pay restitution of $1,091.

Bailiff Jack Arries took the defendant into custody. Another deputy transported him to jail.

The judge dismissed a six-year-old controlled substances case against Brandy Summer Rodriguez. DDA Banks said Rodriguez had provided treatment documents and proof of testing to her attorney, Tammy Riggs. 

In 2016, Riggs was elected to the Reno Municipal Court bench. She no longer represents Rodriguez.

Brandon Keith Small, 23, came to court from jail to continue his probation violation hearing. His attorney, Steve Cochran, has been trying to arrange a mental health evaluation ordered by the judge. 

Melissa Washabaugh from Pershing General Hospital says she can evaluate the defendant on Sept. 11. He’ll return to court on Sept. 14. 

Delson Leon Williams did not show up for his sentencing hearing. The judge issued a no-bail bench warrant.