February 16, 2012
Prosecutor sues Berkeley magistrate in DUI dismissal

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- The Berkeley County Prosecutor's Office says a magistrate exceeded her authority when she dismissed drunken-driving charges against two people and filed new charges to settle the case.

A circuit court complaint says Magistrate JoAnn Overington acted over the objections of the state.

It asks a judge to overrule her decision in the handling of the cases against a Virginia woman and a West Virginia man. 

Chief deputy prosecutor Christopher Quasebarth says there's no law giving a magistrate the power to initiate a complaint on her own.

Overington says she thought she could accept reduced pleas of reckless driving to settle cases but now realizes she made a mistake and needed a prosecutor's approval.

She tells the Herald-Mail it wasn't intentional, and she sees it as a lesson learned.



Recommended Stories

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Popular Videos
The Gazette now offers Facebook Comments on its stories. You must be logged into your Facebook account to add comments. If you do not want your comment to post to your personal page, uncheck the box below the comment. Comments deemed offensive by the moderators will be removed, and commenters who persist may be banned from commenting on the site.
Advertisement - Your ad here
Get Daily Headlines by E-Mail
Sign up for the latest news delivered to your inbox each morning.
Advertisement - Your ad here
News Videos
Advertisement - Your ad here
Advertisement - Your ad here