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Woman assaulted; two men in jail

Thursday, September 11, 2008

ALTON -- Two West Plains men are in the Oregon County Jail after one of them assaulted a woman and both of them stole her purse.

According to a probable cause statement from Oregon County Prosecuting Attorney Fred O'Neill, Trent M. Newton, 33, has been charged with class C felony stealing and his cousin, Doug Newton, 42, has been charged with class C felony stealing and class C felony assault.

Oregon County Deputy Eddie Johnson reported on Aug. 31 he was dispatched to the Bucksnort Liquor Store on Highway 160 concerning an assault that had happened somewhere along side the road.

Johnson said when he arrived at the store there was a woman sitting inside who was bleeding from the mouth. The woman, Juanita Halfacer from West Plains, said a guy named Doogie had hit her and knocked out her front teeth. She also said Doogie and another man stole her purse with what she thought had $70 and her house key in it. She said Doogie lived close to her house in West Plains.

An ambulance transported Halfacer to Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains.

Johnson said he dispatched the West Plains Police Department so an officer could get a statement from Halfacer at OMC. The West Plains officer, after talking to the woman at the hospital said he knew the man she had accused as Doug Newton who was under house arrest in West Plains and they would be looking for him.

Johnson said Oregon County dispatch then notified him that Lonnie Vonallmon had called the sheriff's department and said two men, fitting the description of the men Halfacer had described had come to his house at Rover and said they were lost and needed gas. He said he gave them gas and they went on their way.

The following day, Chief Deputy Eric King received a call from Thomasvillle that a car was sitting at Shaw's Ranch. He ran the license plate and it was registered to Lonnie Newton from West Plains. King also found an ankle bracelet that had been cut-off someone laying next to the car.

Johnson said after driving around the Thomasville area for sometime, the Newton cousins came walking out of the woods, were placed into custody and taken to the sheriff's office for questioning.

Doug Newton said his wife had told him to leave the day before, so he and his cousin Trent went to his mother's house and partied. He said he asked his father if he could borrow his car and his father said no, so after everyone went to bed they just took it.

Doug then stated that Trent said they needed to pick Halfacer up because she had $600 and they could get her to buy beer and weed. He then said he needed to get away from West Plains because the law there knew he was under house arrest.

They came to Alton and Halfacer told them she would give them $10 for gas if they would take her back home. Instead, Doug said he found a road to turn-off on and he told Trent to go to the back of the car and told Halfacer he was going to tie her up. He said he took off his shirt and started to tie Halfacer up with it. Doug said that's when she started talking about the anti-christ and waving her arms around and that's when he hit her.

He said that is when he took her money and left her there. She had only $60 not $600. The statement said he pulled some money out of his pocket and said that was all of her money he had left and that they had spent it all on beer and cigarettes. Johnson said he then asked Doug about the ankle bracelet he was suppose to be wearing and Doug said he cut it off with a knife and must have lost the knife in the woods.

Trent told about the same story except that he said his cousin took Halfacer to the woods and told him to get something to tie her up with and he said he would not and that is when his cousin took her money and hit her and they got in the car and left.

Both Doug and Trent Newton were arraigned Sept. 3 and will be back in court later this month.

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