On the afternoon of Thursday, October 22, 30th Circuit Court Judge Michael O. Hendrickson sent Aaron C.M. Schwartz, 22, and Petie C.M. Schwartz, 18, to prison for 15 years for violating the terms of their probation just three days after it had been granted to them.
Webster County Prosecuting Attorney Ben Berkstresser told the judge that the brothers had returned to the family home where their now 13-year-old sister resided. Both brothers admitted that they had returned home, stating that they believed "there were no restrictions" to their probation.
The plea agreement that both brothers had signed however, clearly stated the inability to return to the family home as a condition of their probation.
Attorney for the Schwartz brothers, Will Worsham tried to argue that their moving back into the family home constituted nothing more than a "technical" violation of the terms of their parole. He tried to point out that even the probation officer, in her report, had recommended "delayed action" for the violation.
Additionally addressed in the hearing was that apology letters that both of the brothers had been required to write to the Amish community.
Berkstresser was quoted by the Webster County Citizen, one of only three reporters allowed to sit in on the hearing as saying, "The only difference (in the two letters) is that each of them has a different signature. They obviously don't respect our courts."
Immediately after the hearing which lasted just 24 minutes and a short recess, the brothers were taken to the Webster County Jail in Marshfield, Missouri. They will remain there until the facility they are to serve their sentence is determined.