Judge sentences two for plot to attack woman last year

WOODSTOCK – A Shenandoah County woman and teenage boy pleaded guilty Wednesday to their roles in a plot that left a victim with serious injuries last year.

WOODSTOCK – A Shenandoah County woman and a teenage boy pleaded guilty Wednesday to their roles in a plot that left a victim with serious injuries last year.

Judge Dennis L. Hupp sentenced Breaunna Anderson Hinkle to five years in prison with one year and six months suspended for malicious wounding; five years, all suspended, for abduction; and three years, all suspended, for strangulation. Hupp ordered Hinkle, 20, of Basye, to serve three years of supervised probation upon her release and to have no contact with the victim. Hinkle also must pay $4,526 in restitution, jointly and severally, with her co-defendant Colby Brian Mumaw. The court granted the commonwealth’s motion to dismiss Hinkle’s remaining charges of conspiracy to commit a felony and a second count of abduction.

An agreement reached between Hinkle’s attorney Charles Ramsey and the commonwealth called for the defendant to enter the guilty pleas and receive the punishment as given.

The court had scheduled the defendants’ cases to go to trial this week. At a pretrial hearing last week, Hinkle read a statement to the judge in which she expressed frustration that Ramsey was not looking out for her best interests and she felt he was pushing her to plead guilty. At the hearing Wednesday, Hinkle said she was not forced to enter into the plea agreement and did so voluntarily.

Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Louis Campola and Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Kristen Zalenski prosecuted Mumaw and Hinkle’s cases, respectively. Campola proffered evidence for both cases. Mumaw drove with the victim on Sept. 20 while Hinkle lay in the back of the vehicle. Mumaw stopped along the road to go to the bathroom. At that point, Hinkle attacked the victim from the back seat.

The assault then moved to outside the vehicle where Hinkle had the victim on the ground, Campola said, adding that  Hinkle kicked and punched the woman and then began choking her.

The attack left the woman with a broken nose, a severe concussion and other related injuries. The victim has since moved out of the area and joined the U.S. Army, Campola added.

Mumaw, represented by Kermit Racey, entered Alford pleas of guilty to conspiracy to abduct and conspiracy to cause malicious bodily injury. A defendant who enters an Alford plea maintains his or her innocence but acknowledges that the prosecution likely could obtain a guilty verdict.

Racey accepted the proffer of the evidence but pointed out that his client did not participate in the assault. Racey added that there was no evidence that his client and Hinkle made any agreement to abduct or assault the victim. Mumaw instead thought he and Hinkle planned to “play a trick” on the victim, Racey said.

Mumaw, 17, who was 16 at the time of the offenses, was charged as an adult. However, Hupp imposed a hybrid punishment of juvenile and adult punishments. Mumaw must serve 15 days in a juvenile detention facility for each of the charges for which he pleaded guilty. Hupp also sentenced Mumaw to 12 months in jail and suspended the time in its entirety. The judge ordered Mumaw to serve two years of supervised probation upon his release from detention. Racey said his client already served 60 days in the detention facility but that time of incarceration, by state law, cannot count toward the sentence imposed by the court.

Under terms of the plea agreement, Hupp granted the commonwealth’s motion to dismiss Mumaw’s remaining two charges.