Jail time ordered for man who bought gun with a bad check

A Zanesville man accused of using a bad check to purchase a gun at a Marietta auction will have to shell out nearly $1,000 in order to be able to serve the intermittent jail sentence he requested.

Steven R. McNemar, 28, of 2430 Vista View Drive, will be spending 12 weekends in the Washington County Jail for using a check from his closed Huntington Bank checking account to purchase nearly $700 worth of items, including a shotgun, from McLeish Auctions on Jan. 12.

He was initially indicted on a third-degree felony charge of grand theft of a firearm and a first-degree misdemeanor charge of passing bad checks.

The felony charge was dropped when McNemar pleaded Wednesday in Washington County Common Pleas Court to the misdemeanor charge.

He faced six months in jail on the charge.

Immediately following the plea, Washington County Common Pleas Court Judge Randall Burnworth cited an agreed disposition when sentencing McNemar to serve 30 consecutive days in the Washington County Jail.

But McNemar’s attorney Eric Fowler requested an intermittent jail sentence instead.

“If you sentence him to 30 days straight he’s absolutely going to lose his job at Kellogg’s,” protested Fowler.

Fowler asked that McNemar be allowed to serve his 30 days over the course of 10 weekends so that he could keep his job at Kellogg’s and a second job at an oil and gas company.

Washington County Assistant Prosecutor Kevin Rings expressed concern that scheduling the Zanesville man’s change of plea and sentencing had been difficult. Wednesday’s hearing was originally scheduled for the previous week.

“We had problems getting him here a couple times,” said Rings.

Additionally, McNemar has perpetrated a similar bad check scheme in at least one other Ohio county, said Rings.

Burnworth agreed to allow McNemar to serve weekends, but only if the amount of days was adjusted to account for the fact that weekend sentences are shorter.

“When they do weekends, they’re only doing two and a half days. When we’ve done this in the past, we’ve increased the time so we can get the full 30 days,” he said.

Burnworth calculated McNemar would need to do 12 weekends to account for the entire 30-day sentence.

Additionally, Burnworth made it clear that McNemar would be responsible for the $75 fee charged to inmates who serve weekend sentences-$900 over the course of the sentence-in addition to the restitution to McLeish Auctions.

“He had full restitution ready at the preliminary hearing, but the state did not accept it at that time,” said Fowler, adding that McNemar was ready to pay the $709.99 restitution that day.

McNemar agreed to serve the elongated sentence and pay the weekend jail fees and asked that he be able to begin his sentence Aug. 2.

“So I can turn in an excuse,” he said.

Burnworth agreed and continued McNemar’s personal recognizance bond until he is booked that weekend.

A fifth-degree felony count of falsification to purchase a firearm was also initially levied against McNemar for allegedly lying about a domestic violence conviction on the gun application. However, that charge was dismissed because the facts did not fit the charge, said Rings.