Candidate for Cabell County Magistrate Arrested – displays troubling trend in WV’s lowest court

The Herald-Dispatch is reporting this morning that Amy Walker Daughtery, a Cabell County candidate for Magistrate – who is a Democrat and the lead vote-getter – was arrested on Tuesday for “broker[ing] a $20 crack cocaine deal, admitt[ing] to five similar transactions and tr[ying] to bribe a Huntington police officer.”

What is going on with these Magistrates and candidates for Magistrate across West Virginia?  I have posted on prior cases that just blow your mind  There are some prior cases (also this one) which I have not posted on which will also blow your mind.  Had these arrests not taken place, and had I or someone else made the allegation that this type of behavior was going on, nobody would believe it.  People would dismiss it as a conspiracy theory.

It’s just beyond the pale.  According to the Herald-Dispatch, she requested the drugs via telephone, and then arrived at the set location – a Rite Aid parking lot – where she met an undercover state trooper who gave her .4 grams of crack cocaine in exchange for $20.  Then, as she was being booked in the very magistrate court office where she was hoping to sit in judgment of others, she attempted to bribe the Huntington police officer who was booking her.  Reportedly, she said she would give him money “if he would release her from custody at that time and location.” 

Daughtery was charged with felony bribery and six counts of possessing with an intent to deliver crack cocaine.  Then, she was arraigned by her opponent in the magistrate court race – Magistrate Mike Woelfel.  I bet he is counting his lucky stars this morning.  According to the article:

Before the May primary election, Daugherty told The Herald-Dispatch she believed common sense was the most valuable asset for a candidate to possess, and said she would learn enough about the law as she heard each case.

During the primary, Daugherty led the way in the 18-candidate race all evening. She captured 7,041 votes, or 9.43 percent of the vote. She promised to bring integrity as well as common sense to the office if elected in November.

“Am I happy? I don’t know if that is the word,” she said the night of the May primary. “I’m shocked. I’m numb. We need new blood down there and we know that. Everybody knows that. I’m ready to build up the faith and confidence back into the magistrate system.”

Wow, the people of Cabell County should also be counting their lucky stars.

The article also reported that investigators questioned Daugherty for nearly two hours at the Huntington Police Department.  Obviously not much common sense there.  She should have read my post from a couple of days ago about keeping your mouth shut.

Apparently she received an endorsement from the union of the Huntington Police Department.  Nonetheless, they investigated her and took her down.  Bravo to the West Virginia State Police, as well as the Huntington Police Department’s Drug and Vice unit and Violent Crime Drug Task Force for maintaining integrity our lowest wrung of the West Virginia judicial system – I wish other agencies across West Virginia would be open to doing the same.

 – John H. Bryan, West Virginia Attorney

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