Hanna arrested for witness harassment

Cathy Decker/Staff reporter

On Oct. 28 Mercer County Sheriff's deputies responded to a trespassing complaint at 601 Maple Street in Seaton. As a result of the investigation deputies arrested Theodore M. Hanna, 48, of Monmouth, for criminal trespass. Hanna was transported to the Mercer County Jail. He made his first appearance in court Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 28, 2008.

Hanna was charged with harassment of a witness, a Class 2 felony; disorderly conduct, a Class C misdemeanor and a third count of criminal trespass to real estate, a Class B misdemeanor.

Jeff Dale, chief investigator for the Mercer County Sheriff's office, was sworn in and testified at the first appearance. He said that Hanna was next door to the Bob and Cindee Stockham residence in Seaton the previous day. Hanna had been arrested in September on another charge and Stockham was scheduled to be a witness, if there had been a trial. 

Officer Dale said that this was during daylight hours and the Stockhams were getting ready to leave their residence. Dale said that Stockham told him Hanna said, "I'm the type of person not to be messed with." He also made reference to knowing murderers and that one local murderer was set to be let out of prison in early 2009.

Hanna also made some suggestive comments about one of the Stockham's daughters.

Judge James G. Conway provisionally appointed Public Defender Clarence Darrow as Hanna's attorney.

Also testifying at the first appearance was State's Attorney Gregory McHugh, who said that if convicted of the first charge, a Class 2 felony, Hanna would face the possible penalty of from 3-7 years in the Department of Corrections, which might be extendable to from 7-14 years, depending on the defendant's prior record, two years mandatory supervised release, and /or four years probation and /or $25,000 fine.

Judge Conway found probable cause to hold Hanna on the charges and set a preliminary hearing for 9:30 a.m. on Nov. 17, 2008. His bond was set at $70,000 (10 percent) and it was stipulated that he have no contact with any of the Stockhams.