CHARLESTON – Former Mingo County Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury is scheduled to be released from federal prison on March 15.

Thornsbury is currently incarcerated at the residential re-entry management facility in Nashville, Tenn., and was previously incarcerated at FPC Pensacola in Pensacola, Fla.

Thornsbury will have three years of supervised released after release from prison, which must be done in the Southern District of West Virginia, according to the sentencing from U.S. District Judge Thomas E. Johnston. He will be subject to random drug testing and prohibited from owning a firearm.

Johnston sentenced Thornsbury to 50 months in prison in June 2014 after he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy against civil rights.

While serving as the sole judge in Mingo County, Thornsbury conspired with other local public officials to prevent an informant/criminal defendant from further communicating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation regarding possible criminal activity by the Mingo County sheriff.

Thornsbury agreed to impose a lighter sentence on the informant in return for the informant discharging his legal counsel, who had previously facilitated the informant’s communication with the FBI, and retaining legal counsel chosen by Thornsbury.

Thornsbury  entered a plea agreement in October 2013, in which he agreed to plead guilty to felony offense of conspiracy against civil rights.

Former Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum’s murder in April 2013 exposed the criminal scheme involving Thornsbury; Michael Sparks, the former Mingo County prosecuting attorney; and David Baisden, a former county commissioner.

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