Sentencing continued for high-speed driver


A sentencing hearing for a man who pleaded guilty to fleeing law enforcement during a traffic stop will continue next week.

Chad M. Rittenhouse, 28, appeared in court Wednesday for a sentencing hearing that was continued until Sept. 2. The hearing was continued so issues related to another pending case involving Rittenhouse could be addressed at the same time of the sentencing.

Rittenhouse is represented by different attorneys in the two criminal cases.

Rittenhouse was involved in a Jan. 20 high-speed chase in Mechanicsburg after he was stopped by a police officer due to an active warrant from Madison County for aggravated trespassing.

During the pursuit, Rittenhouse reportedly drove at speeds of 50 mph in a 20 mph zone close to when school was letting out in the village. He also reportedly passed multiple vehicles at a time, traveled at 90 mph, ran a stop sign and went head-on with on-coming traffic.

Rittenhouse pleaded guilty to one count of failure to comply with an order or signal of a police officer. He is also charged with two counts of failure to appear as required by recognizance for failing to show up at multiple hearings.

After a continuation date was established, the court proceeded to review allegations brought against Rittenhouse for six bond violations. These allegations included failing to appear at a pre-sentence investigation appointment, driving under suspension on two occasions, failing to appear at a bond violation and sentencing hearing, and trespassing at a Champaign County deputy’s residence.

Champaign County Prosecutor Kevin Talebi called multiple Champaign County deputies and Mechanicsburg Police Chief John Alexander to testify regarding the allegations. The allegation that Rittenhouse failed to appear at the pre-sentence investigation appointment will be addressed during the Sept. 2 hearing.

At the conclusion of the testimony, the court found Rittenhouse guilty of the other allegations. Judge Nick Selvaggio revoked Rittenhouse’s bond and said the bond violations will be taken into consideration as sentencing factors.

Drug offender sent to prison

A man who pleaded guilty to providing and using drugs around a minor was sent to prison earlier this week.

Kevin L. Thomas, 37, of North Lewisburg, was sentenced to 18 months in prison Monday and was fined $5,000.

Thomas was observed on a surveillance video in April using drugs with a minor at the North Lewisburg park.

On the video, Thomas reportedly hands the minor a piece of paper and the youth removes the object and can be seen using a soda bottle to crush the object. The juvenile then reportedly rolls pieces of paper and snorts the substance.

The grand jury indictment stated the substance was Xanax.

Thomas was convicted of complicity to trafficking in cocaine in Union County in July 2005.

Upon his release, Thomas is subject to post-release control up to three years.



By Nick Walton

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Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.

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