Arbogast in Taylor Co. Court

TAYLOR COUNTY—A Buckhannon man was back in Taylor County Circuit Court, last week, to enter a negotiated plea agreement.

John Franklin Arbogast, 50, was back in court to enter a guilty plea to conspiracy to commit a felony.

Back in April, he was indicted on one count of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and one count of conspiracy to commit a felony by the Taylor County Grand Jury.

As part of the negotiated plea, Arbogast’s additional charge would be dropped.

With the entry of the guilty plea, he faced a possible sentence of not less than one nor more than five years in prison, a fine of not more than $10,000, or both.

According to previous reports, Arbogast was arrested in March of last year in Taylor County, when he knowingly and willfully conspired with Jeffrey Burton Lawlis to deliver drugs to an individual.

During the deal, Arbogast reportedly got out of the vehicle to give the individual, who happened to be a confidential informant for the Taylor County Sheriff’s Department, methamphetamine in exchange for money.

During his court hearing, Arbogast’s counsel, Jason Gain, addressed the court, sharing that they were in a bit of a “chicken and egg” situation.

“Mr. Arbogast is currently facing similar charges in Upshur County, and we would like to sentence him concurrently with these charges,” Gain revealed. “We would ask to have his sentence held in abeyance and have him placed on the Community Corrections program, but the issue is they have not sentenced him yet.”

He disclosed that through communication with officials in Upshur County, if he were to be sentenced to Community Corrections, they would follow suit.

“The prosecutor in Upshur County has revealed that they would like to sentence him much the same way, but they are waiting on the conclusion of our case here, first,” Gain noted.

After some discussion, Nineteenth Circuit Court Judge Alan D. Moats ordered that Arbogast would be sentenced to one-to-five years in prison, with credit for the time he had already served. The sentence would be served behind bars, until the other county’s matters had been resolved.

“I will allow you to file a motion for bond supervision following his sentencing in the other case,” Moats told Gain.


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