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Rutledge Expresses Problems With Defense

After making guilty pleas in July to two counts of incest, Richard Lamar Rutledge has sent a letter to court authorities expressing dissatisfaction with his attorneys.

During a status hearing in district court on Wednesday, Sept. 14, public defender Amanda Gibson said she and public defender Jay Reno are planning to visit with Rutledge in Wolf Point during the last week of September.

“I’ve heard that before from both of them,” Rutledge said to District Judge David J. Cybulski.

Rutledge is scheduled to be evaluated on Oct. 4, before sentencing can take place. A hearing is planned for Oct. 12.

Penalties are not less than four years or more than 100 years in the state prison, a $50,000 fine or both.

During the hearing, Rutledge said that he felt he was lied to when Reno discussed the plea agreement with him.

The defendant asked Cybulski if there was a way that the judge could make sure they come to Wolf Point in late September.

“I can’t figure out a way to pound this faster while doing it right,” Cybulski said.

Rutledge said to the judge, “I don’t feel I’ve been mistreated by you. It’s just a lack of communication with lawyers.”

Rutledge indicated that he wasn’t likely to try to withdraw his guilty pleas.

“As long as they come and don’t bullcrap me, I’m good to go,” Rutledge said. “I’m tired and want to get this over with.”

The often delayed trial for Rutledge was scheduled to begin on July 18, in the district courtroom in Wolf Point until a plea agreement was reached. Rutledge was facing the charges of two counts of sexual intercourse without consent and two counts of incest. He has been in the county jail awaiting trial for more than three and a half years.

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