Deputy hearing continued until Feb. 2

Published 5:04 pm Wednesday, January 19, 2011

FRANKLIN—A judge on Wednesday continued a preliminary hearing to Feb. 2 for an Isle of Wight County sheriff’s deputy facing felony charges in connection with alleged sexual acts with a teenage girl.

Suffolk attorney Justin Bush, who is representing Sgt. Ronald Carwile in the alleged incidents that occurred in Franklin between September 2009 and January 2010, requested the continuance. Bush claimed after numerous efforts to obtain documents from the alleged victim’s mental health counselor, he finally received more than 200 documents. That was two days before Wednesday’s preliminary hearing.

Bush told Judge Robert Brewbaker he didn’t have time to review the documents.

“We subpoenaed several records on the alleged victim’s mental health that would lend credibility (in Carwile’s favor),” Bush said.

Halifax Commonwealth’s Attorney Kim White, who was appointed to prosecute Carwile, asked that Carwile forgo his preliminary hearing, which is held to determine if there is enough evidence for the case to continue.

Bush argued against the motion, claiming Carwile has the right to face his accuser and the right to a preliminary hearing. He also stressed that the documents from the counselor are vital to the case.

“You have an alleged victim that wholly lacks credibility,” Bush said. “The documents support that.”

White noted Carwile’s case was continued in September to acquire mental health records.

“They waited until the eve of the preliminary hearing to do that (ask for the continuance),” White said. “The defense delayed what it needed to do — to get the court’s assistance.”

Brewbaker said he was concerned about the delay.

“I also want this case to move along,” he said.

The rescheduled hearing will be held at 1:30 p.m. in Franklin Juvenile and General District Court.

Carwile was placed on administrative leave following the charges pending the outcome of an administrative investigation by the sheriff’s office. He has since returned to work, but is not participating in law enforcement activities.