Feds recommend one year for ex-Mingo prosecutor

CHARLESTON (AP) — The government is seeking the maximum punishment of one year in prison for a former Mingo County prosecutor.

Michael Sparks is scheduled to be sentenced next Wednesday in Charleston federal court on a corruption charge.

Sparks and ex-Mingo County Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury were accused of protecting the late Sheriff Eugene Crum from revelations that Crum bought drugs from a campaign sign maker. Authorities said Sparks and Thornsbury kept the sign maker, George White, from talking to the FBI about Crum, who was killed in an unrelated shooting last April.

The Charleston Gazette reports prosecutors called Sparks’ conduct “deplorable.”

Last year, Sparks pleaded guilty to depriving White of his constitutional rights and Thornsbury pleaded guilty to conspiring to deprive White of his rights.

Thornsbury will be sentenced in April.

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