WARSAW — Motions to waive initial hearings by attorneys for C. Aaron Rovenstine and Mark H. Soto have been filed with Kosciusko Circuit Court. The motions eliminate appearance of both individuals Thursday morning. Initial hearings, for both men to hear the indictments brought against them by a grand jury, were scheduled for 8:30 a.m. in Kosciusko Circuit Court.
Rovenstine’s attorneys, James H. Voyles and Jennifer M. Lukemeyer and Mike Miner, filed a motion to waive his initial hearing on March 10. Additional court dates were set at that time: status conference at 10 a.m. April 11, and pre-trial conference for 3 p.m. May 9, both matters are normally held between the attorneys and judge.
Just today, March 15, Scott J. Lennox filed an appearance on behalf of Soto along with a motion to waive his initial hearing and the surrender of Soto’s passport. The appearance and motion were referred to Elkhart Superior Court No. 1 Judge Evan S. Roberts. No further court dates have been noted.
Roberts was appointed the special judge in all three cases last week after regular judge, Michael Reed recused himself and all other judges in the county from hearing the cases. The reason was conflict of interest.
Court documents note Judge Michael Reed has directed Soto’s passport be sealed in the evidence closet of the court, pending further action by Roberts.
In matters relating to Kevin S. Bronson, the county’s public defender’s office filed documentation Friday, March 11, with the court stating the co-public defenders, Jay A. Rigdon and Scott J. Lennox, respectfully request the court assign outside council for representation for Bronson due to conflict of interest for both offices. The court took the matter under advisement.
Rovenstine, Soto and Bronson were indicted by a Kosciusko County Grand Jury on Feb. 29.
Rovenstine has been indicted on three counts of bribery, one count of intimidation, one count of assisting a criminal and five counts of official misconduct.
Soto was indicted on three counts of corrupt business influence and three counts of intimidation.
Bronson was indicted on three counts of corrupt business influence and seven counts of intimidation. He had his initial hearing on March 8, when sentenced on a drug charge that allegedly prompted the calling of the grand jury.