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Man sentenced for 2022 Grafton Road death

The man found responsible for the 2022 death of Grafton Road resident Michael E. Mobley, 29, was sentenced in Monongalia County Magistrate Court Friday morning. 

Mobley identified and was known in the community as Kimmy Rose but had not legally changed her name.

William Bailey, 25, pleaded guilty to negligent homicide last month, admitting to hitting the victim with his vehicle. 

Bailey appeared via video conference from North Central Regional Jail, where he has been incarcerated since Dec. 21, 2023. 

Public Defender Justin Hershberger, who represented Bailey, called his client’s older sister and father as character witnesses. They said despite some struggles with addiction in the past, he was a compassionate, caring person who “doesn’t have a mean bone in his body.” 

They testified that since the accident, Bailey has gone through addiction treatment, is turning his life around and expresses “deep remorse” for what happened the evening he hit Mobley. 

Bailey also made an emotional statement to the court, tearfully apologizing to the Mobley family for “disrupting their lives and causing them grief.” 

Hershberger said Bailey has always accepted responsibility for his actions and even stopped his vehicle shortly after realizing he hit something and reported the incident to police. The state police officer who responded was unable to find anything that evening. 

Deputies and detectives with the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Department were dispatched to the scene Nov. 4, 2022, when they found Mobley’s remains as well as various vehicle parts, including a mirror assembly, antenna and orange marker lights, leading investigators to believe the victim died after being struck by a vehicle.   

“He (Bailey) tried to do the best he could that night,” Hershberger said. 

Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Jason Glass said he thought the trooper who initially investigated “did a horrid job in this matter.” That officer, he said, is no longer with the West Virginia State Police. 

Glass said that while this case is difficult for both sides, because a death occurred the state can only ask for the maximum sentence of one year to be imposed. He also requested restitution for the Mobley family’s funeral expenses. 

Magistrate James Nabors said this was a “tragic event” and it was an “unfortunate set of circumstances that happened that night on Grafton Road.” 

Nabors nothing will ease the pain of the Mobley family and he knows that Bailey had no ill-intent, but his actions were negligent and because of that Mobley is gone. 

Nabors sentenced Bailey to the maximum one year in prison with credit time served since Dec. 6, 2023, when he was taken into custody in Massachusetts. He is currently being housed at North Central Regional Jail. 

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