By Rosemary K. Otzman
Two co-defendants charged with multiple counts of embezzlement and forgery at 34th District Court had their preliminary exams adjourned to an unspecified date.
The two women were scheduled to appear before Judge David Parrott on Jan. 14.
Lashantinette Daquette Obioha, 34, had posted her $100,000 or 10% bond and retained attorney Peter Samouris.
Obioha was charged with three counts of embezzlement, two of which were more than $100,000; five counts of forgery; two counts of false pretenses; identity theft; and using a computer to commit a crime (maximum imprisonment of 20 years or more).
Her co-defendant Marsha Sharlene Rutherford, 37, also posted her $100,000 or 10% bond. Rutherford retained attorney Darryl Mitchell.
Rutherford is charged with two counts of embezzlement for $100,000 or more, two counts of false pretenses for $100,000 or more, identity theft, and using a computer to commit a crime (maximum imprisonment of 20 years or more).
Court officials said they were unsure of the date to be set for the preliminary exam since there were so many attorneys involved that they had to come up with a date when all were available.
According to court records, the crimes are alleged to have occurred on May 1, 2009. The recommendation for the warrant was signed Nov. 20, 2014.
Van Buren Township Police Lt. Ken Floro is the police officer in charge of the case.
On Tuesday, Lt. Floro said this incident was reported to VBT police in May of 2014 and involved a significant amount of investigation into a somewhat extensive fraud case at a local business.
“We will move as quickly with the judicial process as possible,” he said.
He said the incident involves Archer Corporate Services and a series of fraudulent activity that occurred there over a multi-year period involving an employee and another individual.
Joseph Michael Boeck
Joseph Michael Boeck, 21, was charged with larceny from a motor vehicle and breaking and entering a motor vehicle with damage to the vehicle, which allegedly occurred Sept. 3 in the city of Belleville.
He was lodged in the Wayne County Jail on a bond of $5,000 or 10%.
With the help of court-appointed attorney David Lankford, Boeck waived his preliminary exam and was bound over to circuit court for an arraignment on the information on Jan. 21.
Lankford said, his bond is low but his client may have a hold out of 35th District Court for unpaid restitution. Boeck was referred to pretrial services for a recommendation.
Officer in charge of the case is Belleville Police Officer Jeff Wickham.
Matthew Paul Rife
Matthew Paul Rife, 31, waived his preliminary exam on Jan. 14 and was bound over to circuit court by Judge Parrott for an arraignment on the information at 9 a.m. Jan. 28.
Rife was charged with two counts of assaulting/resisting/obstructing a police officer on Jan. 1. He posted his $30,000/10% bond and was represented by a court-appointed attorney.
Officer in charge of the case was Sumpter Officer Beth Egerer.
Dylon Marcus Braun
Dylon Marcus Braun was charged with unlawful driving away of a motor vehicle, interfering with a crime report, domestic violence, and failure to stop after a collision on April 25, 2014 in Van Buren Township.
He posted his $10,000/10% bond and hired attorney Michael Vincent.
Attorney Olga Wermalenka appeared on behalf of Vincent and asked for an adjournment. Judge Parrott said Vincent had arranged for a stipulated order of adjournment to Feb. 4.
Wermalenka also requested adjournments for two other clients until Feb. 4 because her law firm was waiting for in-car videos from police departments.
VBT Detective Donovan McCarthy is in charge of the case.
Jeffrey Michael Miller
Jeffrey Michael Miller, 42, waived his preliminary exam on Jan. 14 and was bound over to circuit court for an arraignment on the information on Jan. 28.
Miller was charged with a dangerous weapon offense and possession of controlled substance / marijuana with the crime allegedly committed on Dec. 27 in Van Buren Township. He posted his $1,000/10% bond and was represented by court appointed attorney David Lankford.
Detective McCarthy is in charge of the case.
George Robert Wagasy
George Robert Wagasy, 50, was charged with possession of narcotics (heroin) and waived his preliminary exam. Judge Parrott bound him over to circuit court on Jan. 21 for an arraignment on the information. He is lodged in the Wayne County Jail on a bond of $5,000 or 10% and was defended by court-appointed attorney Lankford.
Lankford said there was a probable violation in another drug case before Judge David Groner.
The alleged crime took place April 19, 2014 in the city of Belleville. Belleville Officer Jeff Wickham is in charge of the case.
By Rosemary K. Otzman