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Monday, June 24, 2024 at 3:13 PM

District Court April 30

The Tenth Judicial District Court convened Tuesday, April 30, with Judge Thomas Stockard presiding.
District Court April 30

Carl Wayne Sampson, in custody, pleaded guilty to the Category D felony of Fourth-Degree Arson, punishable by 1-4 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. Sampson was accused of setting fire to four bushes on property he did not own. Wright Noel of the Churchill County Public Defender’s Office requested that Sampson be provisionally placed into the Western Regional Specialty Court program while awaiting sentencing on July 9, pending a pre-sentencing investigation (PSI).  

Vanessa Kaylynn Rodrigues, in custody, appeared for sentencing on a Category B felony of Escape by Prisoner While in Lawful Custody, to which she pled guilty in February. At that time, she also admitted to violating the terms of supervision, having received probation after being convicted of Grand Larceny last August. 

Senior Deputy District Attorney Chelsea Sanford told the court that this case exemplifies the proverbial phrase, “no good deed goes unpunished.” According to Sanford, Churchill County law enforcement officers treat defendants respectfully and with dignity.

Sanford played for the court body camera footage from Fallon Police Officers Shyne and Jacobs, which showed their interaction with Rodrigues as they addressed her regarding an unrelated warrant from Fallon Municipal Court. Officers agreed to allow her to smoke a cigarette before taking her into custody, at which point she ran. After being tackled, she yelled inappropriate accusations at the officer while being cuffed.  

Additional body-cam footage showed Rodrigues in handcuffs being walked out of the hospital, slipping out of the cuffs, and running again. A scuffle followed, which resulted in her being tackled again. Rodrigues then bit the officer’s arm hard enough to draw blood through his long-sleeved shirt.  

Sanford asked Judge Stockard to revoke Rodrigues’ probation, impose her underlying sentence, and send her to prison on the new escape charge.  

Wright Noel told the court that Rodrigues has a history of substance abuse, including alcohol, methamphetamine, and marijuana, which dates back a long time. Although she was sober at the time of the incident, Noel stated that does not mean there wasn’t a “diminished decision-making capacity from a lifetime of substance abuse.” Noel asked for probation for his client, with the condition of attending Drug Court. Noel said Rodrigues had undergone a substance abuse evaluation, which recommended a high-intensity residential program. 

Rodrigues told the court she has PTSD and requested rehab or residential treatment to help her get back on her feet, stating she felt she would benefit.  

Judge Stockard denied Noel’s request for probation and sentenced Rodrigues to 14-48 months in prison. Stockard also revoked her probation on her 2023 conviction and imposed the underlying sentence of 16-56 months. The sentences are to run consecutively. She was remanded to the custody of the Churchill County Sheriff to await transfer to the Nevada Department of Corrections women’s unit in Las Vegas.  

Continuances and Warrants  

Tyler Kirby Shaw failed to appear for his scheduled arraignment. Judge Stockard issued a $5,000 Bench Warrant. Upon being brought into custody or self-surrendering, Shaw must test negative for drugs before being released on bail and will be subject to supervision by Court Services. Should he violate the terms of pre-trial release, Stockard will issue a $50,000 cash-only bond.

Amber Dawn Dittmer Shaw failed to appear for her scheduled arraignment. Judge Stockard issued a $10,000 warrant, as this was her second missed court appearance. Upon being brought into custody or self-surrendering, Shaw must test negative for drugs before being released on bail and will be subject to supervision by Court Services. Should she violate the terms of pre-trial release, Stockard will issue a $50,000 cash-only bond.

Gage Thomas Elizarraraz - continued to May 7.

Jordan Adam Cunningham - continued to May 14.  

 

 


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