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Charge dropped against Martinsburg councilman

August 31, 2000

Charge dropped against Martinsburg councilman



By DAVE McMILLION / Staff Writer, Charles Town


MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A charge of not having proof of insurance was dropped against Martinsburg City Council member Christopher A. Baker Wednesday after he provided documents proving he had insurance, said a Berkeley County prosecutor.

A second charge against Baker, second offense driving on a suspended license, is still pending, said Steve Groh, assistant Berkeley County prosecuting attorney.

In a hearing in Berkeley County Magistrate Court, Baker asked for a continuance on the driving on a suspended license charge because there has been confusion over a court date, which prevented him from getting an attorney, according to Groh.

The next hearing on the case is tentatively set for Nov. 3 before Magistrate Sandy Miller, Groh said.

Baker, 24, of Martinsburg, was arrested by Martinsburg Police on June 27 after a patrolman stopped him on North Charles Street, police said.

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A criminal complaint filed by Officer John Sherman alleged that Baker had four unpaid tickets from 1998 and one from 1999.

When Baker was stopped while driving a 1995 Jeep, he asked why he was being stopped, according to a criminal complaint filed in magistrate court. When the officer informed Baker of the driving suspended infraction, Baker responded that he did not have a good reason for driving, the complaint alleged.

Baker could not be reached for comment Thursday night.

Conviction on second offense of driving on a suspended license carries a 10 day jail sentence, Groh said.

If the case is not resolved on Nov. 3, it will likely be scheduled for a trial before a judge, Groh said.

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