A Greene County Circuit Court judge on Monday continued a sexual assault trial against a Ruckersville man until June.
More than 60 potential jurors arrived Feb. 24 for the scheduled three-day trial in Stanardsville for David E. Totten, 38, regarding 16 felony charges and 10 misdemeanor charges for alleged crimes against four minors. Totten is also scheduled for trial on April 20, facing nine counts of alleged felony sodomy against a fifth minor victim.
Circuit Court Judge Claude Worrell sided with the defense to continue the trial after the commonwealth moved to amend the language in several indictments that morning, adding incompetence or physical helplessness to sodomy charges related to one victim.
Totten’s attorney, Brian Jones, said the defense was only made aware of the information on Saturday morning but needed additional time to prepare the defense.
Assistant Com-monwealth’s Attorney Morgane Zander opposed the continuance saying the amendment does not “change the nature of the offense itself.”
Judge Worrell agreed saying that the way the indictments were drawn left them open for additional language possible but agreed it could prejudice the defense so agreed to the continuance. The earliest possible time for the court, defense attorney and commonwealth was June 9-11.
“We disclosed the new information as soon as we were made aware,” said Greene County Commonwealth’s Attorney Edwin Consolvo.
The judge added he was not finding at this time that the prosecutor did not disclose information properly.
Zander moved to amend the sexual battery indictments to aggravated sexual battery, making the five charges felonies.
Totten pleaded not guilty to the amended complaints. He previous pleaded not guilty to the other charges, which include 10 counts of indecent acts by a parent, seven counts of distribution of drugs and five counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Totten was arrested on Feb. 15, 2019, and has been held without bond at Central Virginia Regional Jail in Orange County since.