Benjamin "Craig" Carroll
ROGERSVILLE — One of two men who broke into a home last year in search of pills and allegedly assaulted a pregnant woman was sentenced in Hawkins County Criminal Court last month to four years, although his most serious of his charges was dismissed.
Benjamin “Craig” Carroll, 35, 323 Jones Road, Church Hill, was facing several charges following his arrest last September, the most serious of which was aggravated robbery.
In recent Hawkins County cases aggravated robbery has been resulting in prison sentences of 8 to 15 years in prison with no parole eligibility.
On June 21, however, Carroll pleaded guilty before Judge John Dugger to charges including aggravate burglary, and theft under $500, for which he was sentenced to three years; as well as separate misdemeanor marijuana, pill and drug paraphernalia possession charges, for which he was sentenced to a consecutive 11 months and 29 days.
Carroll was also fined a total of $1,475 and ordered to pay $1,300 in restitution.
Court officials told the Times-News that the robbery charge was dismissed because the prosecution case was weakened after some of the victims were arrested on unrelated charges.
On Sept. 29, 2012, Carroll and another male suspect allegedly burst into a Church Hill residence because they believed there was pain medication present.
Shortly before the burglary, Carroll and the second suspect came into contact with the victim’s husband at the KenJo Market on Silver Lake Road in Church Hill.
Carroll recognized the husband as an acquaintance he knew to have had a problem with pills in the past. Carroll reportedly asked the husband if he had “been to the doctor” and the husband said yes.
The husband then went to Wal-Mart while Carroll and his accomplice allegedly went to the husband’s residence.
Present at the residence were the man’s 30-year-old wife, her 20-year-old brother-in-law, and two small children, ages 3 and 10 months.
The victims said that the back door was forced open and a male they both identified as “Craig Carroll” entered the residence waving an aluminum baseball bat demanding to know where the medicine was.
The woman, who was seven months pregnant at the time, said Carroll pinned her down with his knee in her abdomen, and while swinging the bat wildly struck her in the knee. She said Carroll also struck the brother-in-law in the head with the bat and then hit a glass table causing it to shatter, causing the 10-month-old suffered cuts from the broken glass.
Carroll also reportedly held the bat at the wife’s throat and demanded pills.
As Carroll was fleeing, the woman fired several shots at the Ford Bronco he was driving, striking it in the hood, passenger-side fender.
Police allegedly identified the Bronco at Carroll’s residence with the bullet holes.
At the time of his sentencing Carroll still hadn’t identified his accomplice in the incident.
Other Guilty pleas heard by Dugger last month include:
• Amber Nichole Anderson, 31, of 2100 Isaac Ave., Lot 22, Church Hill, who was sentenced to two years and one day and fined $3,550 for promoting the manufacture of meth, maintaining a dwelling where drugs are used, possession of drug paraphernalia and simple possession of Schedule II.
• Donald Rufus Allen II, 28, 106 Prices Grove Road, Rogersville, who was sentenced to 11 years with a 45 percent release eligibility and fined $1,400 for two counts of robbery and two counts of aggravated assault.
• James Harold Widner, 57, 2030 Walter Drive, Bulls Gap, who was sentenced to five years and fined a total of $2,910 for theft over $1,000, DUI driving on a revoked license, unlawful possession of a weapon, simple possession of Schedule III narcotics and simple possession of a controlled substance.
• Timothy Hank Stubblefield, 27, 141 Cave Ridge Road, Rogersville, who was sentenced to two years and one day for burglary and theft over $500.
• James Kelley Waye, 34, no address available, who was sentenced to 11 months and 29 days with a 12 percent release eligibility and fined $2,010 for DUI with a child under 18, possession of synthetic marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.