Woman gets probation for shooting boyfriend

CASSOPOLIS – A Dowagiac woman who shot her boyfriend in the leg was sentenced to probation and fines and costs.

Lynette Marie Routheaux, 32, of Pokagon Street in Dowagiac, pleaded guilty to careless use of firearms resulting in injury or death and was sentenced to two years’ probation and $1,848 in fines and costs. She was given credit for 209 days in jail already served.

The incident occurred March 21 at a residence in the 300 block of Pokagon Street in Dowagiac when she shot Terrell Blackamore in the leg.

Lynette Marie Routheaux

Defense attorney James Miller said Routheaux was the victim of long-term domestic abuse and was injured in this incident when Blackamore choked her.

“I’m frustrated as to why his statements supersede her injuries,” Miller said.

Judge Herman noted that the couple had an argument and Routheaux had broken a glass when Blackamore confronted her and she went outside.

“You came back in and he heard the gun racked, he was shot and fell to the ground,” he said. “If you introduce a gun into an argument, nothing good happens.”

A Dowagiac man threw away a golden opportunity when he absconded from probation nearly three years ago. Now, he is going to prison.

In another case, Dwane Robert Noble, 39, of East Railroad Street in Dowagiac, pleaded guilty to violating his probation and was sentenced Friday in Cass Circuit Court to a term of 36 months to 20 years in prison. He has credit for 161 days in jail already served.

Noble violated his probation from two December 2015 convictions on meth related charges when he absconded in February 2016 and left the state. He had been given the chance to stay out of prison then by taking part in an Adult Treatment Court probation.

“He had a golden opportunity to change his life but he went on a two-year hiatus,” said Cass County Prosecutor Victor Fitz.

“You didn’t have much of a record but you left the state in 2016 and returned only recently,” Cass Circuit Judge Mark Herman said. “I wish you had taken the opportunity seriously.”

Also Friday, a Dowagiac woman was sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to possession of methamphetamine and thefts from two Dowagiac businesses.

Jennifer Lynn Caldwell, 31, of South Front Street in Dowagiac, pleaded guilty to possession of meth and larceny in a building and was sentenced to two years’ probation and $1,916 in fines and costs. She was given a jail term of time served, 169 days. A restitution amount will be determined at a later date.

She also pleaded guilty to retail fraud and conspiracy to commit retail fraud and was sentenced to pay $675 in fines and costs and $1,106.45 in restitution. She was given credit for 111 days already served in that case.

The meth and larceny in a building incident occurred Dec. 21, 2017 when police found meth inside her apartment above the Wood Fire restaurant. Caldwell worked at the restaurant and was also accused of taking money from a safe in the restaurant.

The retail fraud incident occurred Dec. 20, 2017, when Caldwell and her boyfriend went into the Ham-Sters store and stole four radios.

“You’re a poster child for what meth does to a person’s life,” Judge Herman said. “You are 31 years old. You had a husband and three kids. You spent three years in the National Guard. Now, you’re divorced, you have two felony and two misdemeanor convictions and are wanted in Indiana for drugs and theft.”

“You said you lost everything and are ready to move on,” he added. “You say you don’t need probation and that you’re ready to change, but I think probation is appropriate.”

Cole Leonidas Northrop, 22, of Dutch Settlement Street in Dowagiac, pleaded guilty to possession of meth and was sentenced to three years Swift & Sure probation, 120 days in jail and $1,908 in fines and costs. He can serve his jail term at the Twin County Probation Center.

The incident occurred July 28 at M-51 and Pokagon Street in Dowagiac when police stopped his car and found knives, body armor, brass knuckles, a pellet gun and meth inside the car.

Judge Herman noted that Northrop had an extensive criminal record including convictions as a juvenile and adult.

“I will give you an opportunity but I’m not totally convinced you can do it,” he said. “If you violate, I’m not going to have a lot of compassion if you don’t take it seriously.”

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