Registration case moves forward

ELKINS — Probable cause was ruled to have been met for the arrest of a man who allegedly failed to make updates to his sexual offender registration.

Ricky Allen Fortney, 34, of Elkins, is charged with one felony count of failure to register as a sexual offender or provide notice of registration changes (lifetime). He remains incarcerated at Tygart Valley Regional Jail on a $10,000 cash or surety bond, set by Randolph County Chief Magistrate George M. “Mike” Riggleman.

The probable cause ruling means Fortney’s case will be bound over to the Randolph County Circuit Court for presentation to a grand jury and possible indictment.

Randolph County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Christina Harper represented the state while Fortney appeared with Brent Easton as defense counsel. Riggleman presided.

According to a criminal complaint filed in Randolph County Magistrate Court, on April 2, West Virginia State Police Cpl. S.P. Miller received a letter from Randolph County Probation Officer Jason Elmore regarding Fortney.

Miller was told Fortney had obtained employment with Allegheny Wood Products on Jan. 1 and was terminated Feb. 21.

Miller spoke with officials of Allegheny Wood Products, who confirmed the start and termination dates of Fortney’s employment.

Neither of the dates were reported to officers, and Fortney told police he was “unaware” he had to notify Miller or the registry of his unemployment status, the complaint states.

If convicted, Fortney could be sentenced to not less than one nor more than five years in the state penitentiary.