Anthony Cloud Staff Writer
October 7, 2013
Bell Circuit Court Judge Robert V. Costanzo sentenced Justin Mason on Monday and granted him supervised probation.
Mason, 25, of Pineville, was sentenced to five years in the penitentiary for each of the nine counts of receiving stolen property (firearm and one under $10,000) charges. Mason will be placed on five years supervised probation.
Mason must also pay restitution to the victim, Clarence Mason, in the amount of $3,700.
The incident occurred a little over a year ago.
According to earlier reports, deputies from the Bell County Sheriff’s Department received a complaint from an alleged victim in the Page cut-off area of Bell County in regards to an alleged burglary. When the deputies arrived, 19 guns were missing, along with $2,500 cash, a bag of old coins and a Case knife collection.
On the day of the complaint, officers retrieved five guns stashed in the weeds near the victim’s house.
The victim gave Justin Mason’s name as a possible suspect to the alleged crime. The deputies tracked him down and questioned him about the alleged burglary. Justin Mason initially denied knowing anything about the incident, police said previously.
Justin Mason was eventually arrested on separate charges. The arresting officer was Deputy Shane Stewart.
After being arrested, Justin Mason gave officers information about the stolen items. Deputies executed a search warrant on his apartment and retrieved eight guns, the coins and the knives.
Deputies later recovered two guns from Middlesboro, two guns that were hid in the woods behind Justin Mason’s father’s house and one pistol that was sold to a man in Straight Creek.
The only items that remained missing were a .38-caliber pistol and the $2,500 cash.
Others who received final sentencing include:
* Carolyn Cochran, 53, of Harlan, was sentenced to five years in the penitentiary for second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument and theft over $500. The sentence will be enhanced due to a persistent felony offender guilty plea;
* Ashley Howard, 29, of Wallins, was sentenced to three years in the penitentiary for second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument and 90 days for criminal attempt to commit theft by deception;
* Laura Lee Raines, 32, of Middlesboro, was sentenced to five years in the penitentiary for first-degree fleeing or evading police, 10 years in the penitentiary for being a persistent felony offender, 12 months in the Bell County Jail for leaving the scene of an accident/failure to render aid or assistance and 30 days in jail for operating a motor vehicle under the influence. The sentences will run concurrently with each other;
* Danny R. Ward, 31, of Middlesboro, was sentenced to three years in the penitentiary for theft by unlawful taking over $500;
* Candace Renee Ralls, 31, of Middlesboro, was sentenced to five years in the penitentiary for second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument. If the sentence is probated, she will be placed on five years supervised probation;
* Jordan Shoffner, 24, of New Tazewell, Tenn., was sentenced to five years in the penitentiary for first-degree fleeing or evading police (on foot and in a motor vehicle) and two counts of first-degree wanton endangerment. He was sentenced to 12 months in the Bell County Jail for resisting arrest.
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-248-1010, ext. 208, firstname.lastname@example.org