Court Updates from 11/7/2022

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Michael Anderton: Michael Anderton, 36, of Kewanee appeared at his Preliminary Hearing with attorney Bruce Carmen on Monday.  Officer Eric Hamilton of the Kewanee Police Department testified that Mr. Anderton was cleaning a shotgun his father had given him when the weapon accidentally fired out his window and into the window of the house next to him.  Anderton originally told his neighbor that it was a BB Gun and he had a discussion with the neighbor regarding financial arrangements to replace the broken window.  Officer Paulson found two pellets used for shotguns in the Duarate residence that matched the shotgun in the possession of Mr. Anderton.  Attorney Bruce Carmen said this is a case of negligence, not recklessness.  “He did not meet the standard of care while cleaning the weapon”.  Mr. Carmen said there isn’t enough evidence to support reckless behavior for Reckless Discharge of a Firearm.  Judge Cosby disagreed with Mr. Carmen and agreed with Assistant State’s Attorney Reynolds when Mr. Anderton didn’t ensure the weapon wasn’t loaded before he started cleaning it.  Judge James Cosby found Probable Cause.  Anderton pleaded Not Guilty and Waived a Formal Reading of Charges.  A Jury Pre-Trial is scheduled for December 22, 2022, at 1 PM.

Michael Anderton was charged with Reckless Discharge of a Firearm (Class 4 Felony), Reckless Conduct ( Class A Misdemeanor) and Possession of a Firearm without a valid FOID (Class A Misdemeanor).  Read more on the case here.

Ashton Powers:  Ashton Powers, 25, of Kewanee appeared at his Preliminary Hearing with Attorney Lance Camp on Monday.  Powers remains in custody on a $100,000 (10%) bond.  Ashton Powers Waived his Prelim and Formal Arraignment.  He Pleaded Not Guilty and demanded a Jury Trial.  Attorney Camp requested Preservation of Audio and Video.  Powers was arrested after an investigation indicated that Powers had fired a gun outside of the residence in the 1300 block of Rockwell following a domestic dispute involving an ex-girlfriend. Officers on the scene located spent shell casings outside the residence and witness statements along with those spent shell casings led to the arrests.  Powers was charged with two (2) counts of Unlawful Use or Possession of Weapons by a Felon (Class 3 Felony), Reckless Discharge of a Firearm (Class 4 Felony) and Aggravated Assault (Class 4 Felony).  A Jury Pre-Trial is scheduled for November 17, 2022, at 10 AM.  Read more on the case here.

Tyler Westefer:  Tyler Westefer, 20, of Kewanee failed to show for his Preliminary Hearing from an incident that occurred on July 29, 2022.  Monday was the fourth attempt to conduct his Preliminary Hearing due to continuances.  Mr. Westefer appeared self-represented at his Bond Date on August 29th and was appointed a Public Defender, he posted bond and was released on August 2nd.  A $50,000 warrant was issued on August 1st for Criminal Trespass to Property/Persons Present (Class 4 Felony) and Mob Action (Class 4 Felony).  A $75,000 (10%) warrant was issued on November 7, 2022, for failure to appear and a forfeiture of the $5,000 bond paid in August.  Due to contracts with the County, the appointment of Clark Miljush was vacated and Attorney Aaron Dyer was appointed as counsel.  Mr. Westefer is wanted for questioning by the Kewanee Police Department regarding a hit-and-run that happened on October 7th in Kewanee, read more here.  If you know the whereabouts of Tyler Westefer, contact the Kewanee Police Department at 309-853-1911.  UPDATE – Kewanee Police have Westefer in custody after a pursuit ended by Black Hawk College.

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