A man who allegedly escaped from police after breaking into an Elkins residence with his wife in early October was arrested and remained in jail on a $75,000 cash-only bond Wednesday.
Police allege that Steven L. Smith, 30, of Elkins, is the man who broke into an Elm Street residence with his wife, Corcia Smith, 33, of Elkins, while the owner was sleeping on Oct. 3.
Corcia Smith initially identified herself as Corcia Ramey, according to the criminal complaint in the Randolph County Magistrate Clerk's Office, but later admitted that Steven Smith was her husband, police said. The West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Authority's website currently lists her as Corcia Smith, and the "Corcia Ramey" entry has been deleted from the site.
As previously reported, the incident began when Sgt. S.R. Judy and Cpl. A.M. Channell with the Elkins Police Department responded to a call from an Elm Street resident who said he'd been woken up by his dog barking and believed someone was in his home. After spotting a person in the basement, officers entered and found Corcia Smith hiding among various items. Police discovered that a basement window had been broken from the inside. By way of explanation, Corcia Smith - who initially falsely identified herself as another Elkins woman with whom police were familiar - told police the man with whom she had allegedly broken into the house had escaped through the broken window.
At the time of her arrest, Corcia Smith identified the man who had escaped as Steven Canpel; however, in a written confession on Oct. 11, she admitted "Steven Canpel" was a false name - and that she had given it to protect her husband, Steven Smith, according to the complaint.
"Corcia stated she lied because she was afraid of her husband, Steven Smith," Judy, the investigating officer, wrote in the complaint. "Corcia admitted that Steven Smith was with her in the house at the time of the burglary and she lied due to fear of her husband and what he would do to her if she told on him."
According to the police report, although he was not taken into custody at the time, Steven Smith arrived at the Elkins Police Department while his wife, Corcia Smith, was being questioned immediately following the arrest.
"It should be mentioned that Steven Smith did arrive at the Elkins Police Department while the female subject was being questioned and asked if the female subject was under arrest," Judy reported. "He was advised she was (being arrested) and instructed to go home."
Corcia Smith reportedly told officers that Steven Smith was her husband and that the two were getting divorced, but did not at that time state that Steven Smith - not a person named Steven Canpel - was the person who had escaped out the basement window during the alleged burglary.
As of presstime Wednesday, both Steven Smith and Corcia Smith remained in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail on $75,000 cash-only bonds, awaiting their preliminary hearings in magistrate court.