GOSHEN — The trial starts Monday for an Elkhart man facing several charges in Elkhart County Circuit Court.
Hervey Clanton, 25, of 921 Madison St., Elkhart, is charged with two counts of dealing in cocaine, three counts of neglect of a dependent and one count of possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.
Clanton was arrested June 13 at 1212 Midtown Court, Apt. 84, after officers from the Drug Unit, Uniform Division and Community Affairs Bureau conducted a short-term investigation that led to Clanton’s warrant.
Also arrested at that same location was Chelsea Nusbaum, who was charged with five counts of neglect of a dependent and one count of maintaining a common nuisance.
Nusbaum recently pleaded guilty to two counts of child neglect and was released on Jan. 17 because she had already served her sentence through credit time in jail. She has been ordered to appear as a witness for Clanton’s trial.
According to the probable cause affidavit for Clanton’s case, officers from the Elkhart Police Department Drug Unit conducted two controlled purchases of cocaine. In both instances, Clanton sold $50 worth of cocaine to an undercover officer.
According to the affidavit, during the search conducted on June 13 police found $300 in cash underneath the sheets of a baby’s crib. A white powdery substance, which laster tested positive for cocaine, was found in the closet on a plate. Police also found two marijuana bongs near a television.
They found a loaded handgun in a Marvin the Martian bag. The bag had been placed in a closet on the second shelf from the bottom and three feet from the ground behind children’s clothes. The bag was within reach of all three children, ages 1, 4 and 7, who lived in the residence.
Since his initial hearing in June, Clanton has told the court his family was working to hire an attorney. A week from his initial hearing the court appointed him a public defender. Then, in October, Clanton told the court he wanted to represent himself, according to court documents. Following an interrogation, Clanton said again that he was planning on hiring an attorney. Later in the month a new public defender was appointed to Clanton upon his request.
On Jan. 17, Clanton told the court once again that he planned on hiring an attorney and requested a continuance to his trail date. However, Judge Terry Shewmaker denied the request, telling Clanton that he could hire an attorney, but he’d have to honor his trial date.
The trial starts at 8:30 a.m. in Circuit Court.