April 14, 2016

Ithaca Man Pleads Not Guilty to 15 Criminal Charges

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Corbin Whyte, 31, was arraigned on 15 criminal charges in Tompkins County Court Wednesday afternoon. Whyte pleaded not guilty to all charges, according to The Ithaca Journal.

Whyte faced seven counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, six counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon, one count of fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon and one count of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, according to The Journal.

He was allegedly found in possession of unlawfully-owned guns and drug paraphernalia during a police traffic stop on March 28, according to a police department press release.

Whyte was indicted on April 7 after police found $1,000 in cash, prescription pills, seven guns and several hundred rounds of ammunition in his vehicle, according to The Ithaca Voice.

At the trial, Deputy District Attorney Andrew Bonavia cited Whyte’s prior criminal history — which  included convictions for second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument and tampering with physical evidence, The Journal reported.

Bonavia argued that no bail should be set and Whyte should remain in police custody due to Whyte’s ties to the state, the weight of the evidence on charges — which Bonavia said could land Whyte five to 15 years per count in prison — and the fact that the warrant for his arrest originated in Florida, according to The Journal.

Whyte’s lawyer, Edward Goehler, said that Whyte’s local ties — which Goehler argued include several businesses in the area and two 5-year-old children and a third on the way — should keep him in the area, according to The Journal.

Goehler also noted Whyte’s attendance record at previous court appearances, saying that as a result of his attendence record, his bail should be “fair and reasonable.”

“He’s appeared when he’s had to and will appear when he has to,” Goehler told the court.

Tompkins County Judge John C. Rowley set bail at $250,000 cash or $500,000 bond. Whyte’s next court date is scheduled for May 5 and a trial for August 15, according to The Journal.