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Woman jailed on perjury charges

March 05, 2003|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A woman charged with conspiring to bribe two witnesses connected to the shooting of a West Virginia State Police trooper was arrested Monday night.

Connie Marie Harrison, who also uses the name Connie Catlett, 40, of Harper Lane in Hedgesville, W.Va., was arraigned on one count of subornation of perjury and one count of conspiracy to suborn perjury, both felonies.

Warrants were issued last week for Harrison. Police gave her the chance to turn herself in, but she refused on advice from her attorney, Trooper John Droppleman said.

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Droppleman and two other troopers went to Harrison's home Monday night around 10 p.m. Harrison answered the door with her 17-year-old daughter, Droppleman said.

She was taken into custody without incident, Droppleman said, and was being held in Eastern Regional Jail on $50,000 bail Tuesday.

The perjury allegations are connected to the Oct. 10 shooting of Trooper R.J. Elswick. Harrison's boyfriend, 37-year-old David Munday, is accused of shooting Elswick once above the left ear.

Munday faces the same perjury-related charges as Harrison, and also was indicted last month on charges connected to the shooting. Munday was being held in Eastern Regional Jail without bail.

Since the shooting, during at least eight phone conversations, Harrison and Munday discussed paying $50,000 to two key witnesses - Johnny and Sandra Lambert, according to police reports.

The Lamberts would receive the money if they either left the state, thereby possibly preventing subpoena delivery, or lied and said they knew nothing about the shooting or other events that led to Munday's arrest, said West Virginia State Police Trooper M.M. Kingery. Kingery is the lead investigator on the case.

The Lamberts, who are neighbors of Munday, became involved in the case in the hours leading up to the shooting.

Elswick was shot after he and three other troopers responded to a possible hostage situation at the Lambert home.

Conviction on the subornation of perjury charge carries a sentence of one to 10 years in prison, and conviction of conspiracy to suborn perjury carries a sentence of one to five years in prison.

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