Robert Robertson pleaded guilty Tuesday to smashing a beer bottle over Orlando Jackson's head during an argument inside a Washington Avenue apartment in September, but police are still searching for the person who shot Jackson after he fell out of the apartment window.
Robertson, aka "KO," 52, of Wheeling pleaded guilty to a felony charge of attempted unlawful assault. Ohio County Circuit Judge James Mazzone sentenced him to one year in the Northern Regional Jail in Moundsville.
Police initially charged Robertson with attempted murder, but an Ohio County grand jury indicted Robertson in January on four counts of malicious wounding. Attempted unlawful assault is a lesser included charge.
Court documents state Robertson and Jackson, who is from Cleveland, were among playing cards at a woman's apartment Sept. 15. An argument erupted between the two, and Robertson smashed a beer bottle over Jackson's head after Jackson brandished a knife.
Jackson somehow fell out of the second-story apartment window, but it is not believed Robertson pushed him. Investigators say a third individual exited the apartment and shot Jackson while he was lying in the front yard. Another tenant pulled the wounded Jackson into their apartment and waited for police.
Robertson and the gunman had fled by the time Wheeling police Detective Greg Harris arrived.
Harris said Jackson offered some helpful information about the shooting when he last spoke to him about a week ago, but the detective declined to make that information public. Jackson is familiar with the gunman but does not know where he is from. Robertson has not cooperated with the investigation into the shooting, Harris noted.
Jackson was unreliable in Robertson's prosecution, which frustrated Ohio County Assistant Prosecutor Brian Ghaphery. The state subpoenaed Jackson about a month ago, but Ghaphery said he has been unreachable over the past week. Jackson did not appear Tuesday, when Robertson's trial was scheduled to begin.
Also impacting the case was the resident of the apartment where the argument began. That woman retained a lawyer and refused to speak with the prosecution.
She provided information to Robertson's defense attorney, Kevin Neiswonger, who said he believes the woman, if she testified at trial, would have corroborated Robertson's claim that Jackson jumped from the window and was not thrown by Robertson.
That information influenced the prosecution to offer Robertson a less-severe charge.