A Joplin man pleaded guilty this week to a reduced charge of manufacturing a controlled substance in a case involving a methamphetamine lab discovered inside a house near a school.
Richard D. Hetz, 39, had been facing a Class A felony count of manufacturing meth within 2,000 feet of a school, an offense that carries 10 to 30 years or more in prison. He pleaded guilty Monday in Jasper County Circuit Court to a Class B felony offense of manufacturing the drug in a plea deal with the prosecutor’s office.
Circuit Judge David Dally delayed formal action on the plea bargain and ordered the completion of a sentencing-assessment report. The judge set Hetz’s sentencing hearing for Jan. 28.
Hetz was charged after a search warrant served Jan. 16 of this year on his home at 2633 E. 11th St. turned up several chemical components and equipment for the “shake-and-bake” method of producing the drug. A probable-cause affidavit said the house was within 2,000 feet of Eastmorland Elementary School.
- Crime & Courts
Three minors seriously injured in Friday night accident
Three Vernon County minors were seriously injured in a single-vehicle accident at 10:45 p.m. Friday.
Second defendant sentenced in Joplin murder; man assessed 15 years in slaying of Jacob Wages
Circuit Judge David Mouton assessed Cody Stephens 15 years in prison Friday for his role in the home-invasion murder of 23-year-old Joplin resident Jacob Wages. Stephens, 22, pleaded guilty Dec. 6 to second-degree murder and first-degree burglary in a plea deal capping the prison time he might receive at no more than 15 years.
Aurora teenager hurt in accident north of town
An Aurora resident was injured in a single-vehicle accident at 10:30 p.m. Friday on County Road 2185, four miles north of Aurora in Lawrence County, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Police say death of man apparent suicide
The fatal shooting of a 37-year-old man inside his parents’ home is believed to have been a suicide, according to Joplin police.
Man enters plea in sodomy case, faces deportation
NEOSHO, Mo. — A 24-year-old man pleaded guilty Friday to a reduced charge in a statutory sodomy case involving a 16-year-old boy.
Second defendant sentenced in Jacob Wages murder
Circuit Judge David Mouton today assessed Cody Stephens 15 years in prison for his role in the home-invasion murder of 23-year-old Joplin resident Jacob Wages.
Mindenmines residents hurt in traffic accident in Barton County
Two residents of Mindenmines were injured in a two-vehicle accident at 5:10 p.m. Wednesday on U.S. Highway 160, two miles east of Mindenmines in Barton County, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Last defendant sentenced in Pittsburg slaying
Nathan Whitney expressed remorse Thursday when he became the last of four young Joplin men assessed prison terms for the murder of Ryan Bailey two years ago in Pittsburg. The 29-year-old defendant listened to Bailey’s wife and adoptive mother render emotional victim-impact statements at his sentencing hearing in Crawford County District Court before standing up and responding to their loss.
Man to stand trial in statutory sodomy case
A judge ordered a Carthage man bound over for trial Wednesday on a charge that he had sexual contact with an 8-year-old girl.
Arkansas woman injured in accident east of Eagle Rock
A resident of Arkansas was injured in a single-vehicle accident at 10:40 a.m. Wednesday on Missouri Highway 86, one mile east of Eagle Rock in Barry County, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
- More Crime & Courts Headlines
- Three minors seriously injured in Friday night accident