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December 14, 2019

Jamie Taylor/river news

Bradley Noble consults with Katena RobertsĖTurner, one of his defense attorneys, Thursday afternoon before waiving his right to a preliminary hearing in Oneida County Circuit Court.
Jamie Taylor/river news

Bradley Noble consults with Katena RobertsĖTurner, one of his defense attorneys, Thursday afternoon before waiving his right to a preliminary hearing in Oneida County Circuit Court.
11/2/2019 7:30:00 AM
State drops reckless homicide charge against Noble
Judge lowers bond to $20K

Jamie Taylor
River News Reporter

Bradley F. Noble, 59, of St. Germain, is no longer facing a reckless homicide charge alleging he provided the drugs that led to the overdose death of Wesley F. Hoeft in February of 2018. Just prior to a scheduled preliminary hearing in Noble's case Thursday afternoon, Oneida County assistant district attorney Jillian Pfeifer filed an amended complaint that did not include the homicide charge.

Noble was originally charged Aug. 14 with first degree negligent homicide, two counts of possession of narcotic drugs, possession with intent to deliver narcotic drugs and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was arrested following a traffic stop.

The criminal complaint alleges that when sheriff's deputies searched the car Noble was driving they found sizable quantities of heroin and fentanyl, cocaine, oxycodone, a digital scale and numerous items used for the consumption of various drugs.

Noble was pulled over because an Oneida County deputy recognized him, ran a check and discovered his driving privileges were suspended and he had an active arrest warrant out of Vilas County.

After Pfeifer filed the amended complaint Thursday, Noble's court-appointed attorneys Jessica Phelps and Katena Roberts-Turner said their client was willing to waive his right to a preliminary hearing.

Based on the amended complaint, Judge Patrick O'Melia found there is probable cause to believe that Noble may have committed a felony and bound him over for further proceedings.

Pfeifer requested a separate date for the arraignment.

Noble's attorneys previously filed a motion to dismiss one of the possession of narcotic drug charges, as they allege Noble was in possession of heroin in two different containers.

While the drug in question is the same, the charges are not duplicative, O'Melia found.

"It's close in terms of proximity," O'Melia said, adding that one container was allegedly found in Noble's pocket while the other was in the vehicle he was driving at the time.

Phelps then argued for a reduction of the $40,000 cash bond set earlier in the case to either a signature bond or a lower cash bond.

She stated that in her client's limited involvement with the criminal justice system he has never failed to make a court date.

She also said that with the homicide charge being changed to manufacturer or delivery of heroin <3 grams, the original cash bond was no longer justified.

Pfeifer objected, arguing that while she could not prove "beyond a reasonable doubt" that Noble provided the drugs that led to Hoeft's death, the defendant continued to bring drugs into Oneida County from the southern part of the state for over a year after the death occurred.

O'Melia agreed that a bond modification was in order, but found a signature bond to be inappropriate in light of the charges.

He chose to reduce the bond amount.

"It is a different animal with the homicide charge being dropped," O'Melia said. "So the court will lower the cash bond, but it's still cash - $20,000. He was still bringing dangerous drugs into this area, on at least two occasions alleged in the complaint. Heroin, cocaine, pills, all apparently for sale because of the scale. So it's still serious offenses."

O'Melia then scheduled the arraignment for Nov. 18.

Jamie Taylor may be reached via email at jamie@rivernews

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