A man sentenced to prison after admitting to probation violations attempted to flee the courtroom Thursday and efforts to subdue him required five law enforcement personnel.
Rusty McPherson, 32, admitted in Highland County Common Pleas Court on Thursday to violating his community control. The violations included failing to report to probation, failing to report for an assessment for treatment, and consuming methamphetamine multiple times.
McPherson is listed in court records as having a Mount Orab address, but the notification of alleged supervision violations filed with the court last week lists him as homeless.
He was initially sentenced to community control in December 2012 after pleading guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property.
On Thursday he was sentenced to 10 months on each count, with those sentences ordered to run consecutively for a total of 20 months in prison.
After receiving his sentence, McPherson accompanied defense attorney Lee Koogler to the jury room, located at the back of the courtroom. When he left that room moments later, McPherson bypassed the other inmates instead heading toward the courtroom’s exit.
As he approached, appearing to ask a question of court bailiff Dan Music, who was already moving toward the defendant, McPherson suddenly pushed past Music and bolted for the door, which was about 10 feet away.
To make it through the door McPherson not only had to pass Music, but Highland County Probation Officer Gary Breeden, who had also risen to his feet as McPherson bypassed the other inmates, and Adult Parole Authority officers Brandon Barr and Sheri Barton.
Music, Breeden, Barr and Barton immediately reacted, taking hold of McPherson as he attempted to run from the courtroom. Deputy Steve Conrad also joined in the effrt to subdue McPherson, who was mightily resisting in the hallway just outside the courtroom.
Amid the sounds of the scuffle, McPherson could be heard saying, “I’m done. I’m done.” But even with the admission, there was more struggle and it still took a little more time until the defendant was on the ground and resisting no more.
In the courtroom just inside the door, evidence of the quick action was splayed across the floor: an upended bag, a chair on its back, a pair of glasses, and one shoe.
After the struggle and the defendant being securely taken into custody, an out-of-breath and now handcuffed McPherson was escorted back into the courtroom and seated among the other inmates with Conrad at his side. Once an additional deputy arrived, McPherson was removed from the courtroom by both deputies.
Also sentenced to prison after admitting to supervision violations was Ruth A. Wiseman, 30, Washington C.H.
Wiseman was sentenced to community control and ordered to complete treatment in February 2014 after pleading guilty to fifth-degree felony receiving stolen property.
On Thursday she admitted to violations that include failing to report to probation, consuming various drugs, and failing to complete treatment.
She was sentenced to 10 months in prison.
In other hearings, Kenneth Matthew Matthews, 42, Greenfield, admitted to community control violations that include multiple times of using drugs and failing to complete an outpatient treatment program.
The defendant pled guilty to fifth-degree felony nonsupport last year and was sentenced to five years community control.
On Thursday he was ordered to be assessed for a residential treatment facility. He is scheduled for sentencing in October.
Stephen Weil, 29, Hillsboro, was sentenced to community control and ordered to complete treatment. He pled guilty in July to fifth-degree felony trafficking in and possession of heroin.
Alice Belle Kinney, 67, Hillsboro, pled no contest to aggravated trafficking in drugs, a fourth-degree felony. She is to forfeit more than $8,000 and is set for sentencing in October.
William Kelch, 35, Middletown, pled guilty to two fifth-degree felony counts of nonsupport. He is scheduled to be sentenced in October.
Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.