North Vernon man jailed following drunk driving plea


A North Vernon man who served jail time last year in Charlottesville, Virginia, for an assault and battery charge stemming from clashes between white supremacists and counterdemonstrators is now serving time in the Bartholomew County Jail.

Dennis Mothersbaugh, 38, of North Vernon is serving 30 days in the Columbus jail after entering into a plea bargain agreement on two charges of operating a vehicle while intoxicated filed in Bartholomew Superior Court 2, court records state.

Mothersbaugh is being given good-time credit on the sentence, meaning one day off for every day served, if the good time is earned without any incidents at the jail, according to the sentencing order.

He was accused in May 2017 of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, endangering a person and operating a vehicle with an alcohol concentration equivalent to 0.15 percent or more, court records state. As part of the plea agreement, the OWI-endangerment charge was dismissed. Mothersbaugh pleaded guilty to the OWI at 0.15 percent or more and accepted the 30-day sentence, court records state.

Mothersbaugh was arrested at his Jennings County home in September and was extradited to Charlottesville on the assault and battery charge, Jennings County Sheriff’s Department deputies said earlier.

The Virginia warrant was issued after cellphone video from the Aug. 12 clashes surfaced on social media showing Mothersbaugh marching with white supremacists and punching two people who were protesting. Mothersbaugh was accused of being with a group protesting the scheduled removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from a Charlottesville park.

The cellphone video on social media showed Mothersbaugh first punching an unidentified man, and then punching a woman in the face with his fist as he is verbally accosted by the counterdemonstrators. The allegations included a contention that Mothersbaugh was wearing weighted gloves when he hit the woman in the face.

In Charlottesville, Mothersbaugh pleaded guilty to the assault and battery charge and was sentenced to 360 days in jail with 120 days suspended. With good-time credit, that is about four months in jail.

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