The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

June 5, 2012

Carthage man pleads guilty in theft case

The Joplin Globe

A Carthage man accused of trying to steal more than $2,700 worth of items, mostly pottery, from an antiques mall has pleaded guilty in Jasper County Circuit Court.

Richard L. Daugherty, 56, changed his plea to guilty Friday in an agreement with the Jasper County prosecutor’s office that would limit the prison time he might be assessed to no more than five years.

Daugherty entered the plea to an amended count of stealing, which carries up to seven years in prison. He had been charged with the Class B felony offense of second-degree robbery, which carries a penalty range of five to 15 years.

The defendant was arrested Dec. 8 of last year after leaving Goad’s Antique Mall in Carthage with numerous items, according to a probable-cause affidavit. A store employee, who reported that she could hear pottery items concealed beneath his jacket bumping against each other as he was leaving, tried to stop him, but he pulled away from her.

The affidavit states that a Newton County deputy stopped Daugherty a short time later and spotted pottery items in plain sight inside his vehicle. Later, while he was being booked into jail, some antique toy trains were discovered taped to his leg, and a piece of pottery was recovered from his underwear, according to the affidavit.

Circuit Judge David Mouton delayed formal action on the plea bargain and ordered the completion of a sentencing-assessment report. The judge set Daugherty’s sentencing for Aug. 10.