Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

March 18, 2014

Probation violator gets 20 years in prison

Progress staff reports
Jacksonville Daily Progress

CHEROKEE COUNTY — On March 12, 2014, Assistant District Attorneys Charles J. Breaux Jr. and Deborah D. Dictson with the Cherokee County District Attorney's Office prosecuted Orlanda George Hill in the 2nd Judicial District Court on a motion to adjudicate and sentence for the offense of delivery of a controlled substance. In 2008, the defendant, Orlanda Hill, pled guilty to selling cocaine and was placed on a 10-year probation by District Judge Bascom W. Bentley III.

In February of 2014, the State of Texas filed a motion to adjudicate the defendant's probation, listing multiple violations of probation committed by the defendant, including consumption of marijuana, breaking curfew and involvement in a burglary in Leon County.

During the hearing, Judge Bentley heard testimony from Leon County Deputy Sheriff Robert Kelly that the defendant was apprehended during the investigation of a burglary of a convenience store in Jewett, Texas.

The deputy testified that when he pulled over the defendant at about 1:30 a.m., two passengers, dressed all in black, one wearing a ski mask and carrying a crowbar took off running from the defendant's car.

The defendant was then taken into custody and gloves and another crowbar were discovered in his car. According to the testimony of Adult Community Supervision Officer Omar Marroqin, the defendant was out of Cherokee County without permission and was violating his curfew when arrested.

The defendant took the stand to ask Judge Bentley for yet another chance at probation. Under cross examination, the defendant admitted to running from Jacksonville Police Department officers in December of 2013, during an investigation of a family violence incident between the defendant and the mother of the defendant's child. After a chase on foot, he was caught and charged with assault/family violence, evading arrest and criminal trespass.

At the conclusion of all the testimony, Judge Bentley ordered the defendant to serve the maximum sentence of 20 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice system. The defendant became rude and belligerent with the judge, verbally lashing out, leading to increased security in the courtroom as he became more and more aggressive.

Regarding the sentence, Cherokee County District Attorney Rachel Patton stated she supports Judge Bentley's ruling, which sends a strong message to anyone on probation that the courts expect compliance with probation conditions and that violations are not taken lightly.