|Guilty verdict handed down in placement of cemetery stone|
By Jan Rahn
Presiding over the trial of the City of Grant vs Marvin Stumpf on Wednesday, Dec. 16, Judge Edward D. Steenburg found the defendant guilty of a Misdemeanor.
Stumpf’s charge stems from placing a grave marker in Grant Fairview Cemetery despite being told it did not meet rules and regulations of the cemetery.
Sentencing is set for Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2010 at 9 a.m.
Four witnesses took the stand to testify for the prosecution on behalf of the City of Grant.
Prosecuting the case was the city’s attorney, Philip Pierce.
After seeking permission to erect a large memorial stone and being told “no” by both the cemetery board and city council, Stumpf went ahead and erected the stone at the grave site of his wife in Fairview Cemetery during the first part of December 2008.
The cemetery marker is out of compliance with the rules and regulations of the Grant Cemetery Board, who was given the go-ahead in April to pursue legal action against Stumpf through the city’s attorney.
Judge Steenburg found Stumpf guilty of violation of the rules and regulations adopted by the Grant Cemetery Board, stating Stumpf was aware of the rules, was denied permission to place the stone, yet went ahead and had it erected in the cemetery after seeking and being denied permission.
Testifying for the City of Grant were Mayor Mike Wyatt and City Clerk Jessie Faber.
Gerald Werner, former chairman of the Grant Cemetery Board, answered questions posed by the prosecution and defense.
Also testifying was Ron Cochran, who is in his sixth year as cemetery caretaker.
The defendant was represented by Ogallala attorney Neil Williams.