ESCANABA - In an effort to save time and taxpayer money, a local judge decided to put off any decisions on current motions in the criminal cases of a Bark River man accused of fraud and embezzlement.
Because of the number of files and charges against Jason Bradley Ives at the circuit court level in Delta County, Judge Stephen Davis said he wants to wait until after the final plea cut-off date - March 30 - before any motions are considered in court.
"What I'm looking at is to unify this ... for economy of trials," Davis said, adding he foresees never-ending motions prolonging the court cases if a final plea date is not adhered to; the plea cut-off date has already been postponed, he said.
After 4 p.m. on Friday, March 30, all parties involved will know what cases have not reached any possible resolution and are headed to trial, said Davis. After that time, motions will be considered, he said.
In one of the court cases, Ives is accused of defrauding a Delta County couple out of $30,000 in an alleged property scam dating back to October 2010. The felony carries a maximum sentencing of 10 years in prison.
In the other case, Ives is charged with four felony counts of larceny by conversion $1,000-$20,000 regarding failed transactions to four separate parties, including the couple above, in 2010.
Each count carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
Ives is scheduled to appear for a trial on the four larceny by conversion charges on May 30-June 1. According to the criminal complaint, Ives allegedly converted for his own use, more than $20,000 he received as down payments from four property buyers.
Prior to both criminal cases, the Delta County couple filed a civil suit against Ives and his wife, Jennifer. The Ives' are scheduled to appear in circuit court for a bench trial on May 7-8.
In addition, Ives is facing an administrative hearing with the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Commercial Services downstate. A homeowner filed the complaint with the regulatory agency after paying Ives more than $125,000 to build a home in Rapid River that was never completed. Ives pleaded not guilty to several building code violations and contract violations.
Additional criminal charges against Ives are also pending authorization in Menominee County.
Ives remains free on a $25,000 cash bond he posted in December in Delta County.