A few days ago I told you I was going to give an update on something related to Jonathan Matthew May (of Newark, Delaware); convicted along with co-defendant Austin Issac Vantrease (also of Newark, Delaware) in Ryan’s attack. Today is the day. This is where I will give my standard disclaimer that this is my account, I believe it as true, and I am also sharing opinion.
I need to take you back to the sentencing hearings in 2010. Jonathan May’s was the first hearing. At that time he was carted to jail to serve one year (but freed after seven months) and ordered to pay restitution for roughly $75,000 “jointly and severely” with Austin Vantrease. From here on out, all monetary values are approximations.
This type of restitution, as I understand it, is only for the crime itself. For example, the cost of Ryan’s clothes that were damaged when attacked.
More expenses came in and a few months later Austin Vantrease was sentenced. He was ordered to serve two to ten years in prison (currently in Huttonsville Correctional Center) and pay restitution of roughly $100,000 “jointly and severely” with Jonathan May. It was at this time that Jonathan May’s restitution should have been amended (from $75,000 to $100,000), but the court seemed to let it slip. This means May could stick Vantrease with roughly $25,000 if he is not willing to agree to owing it too.
I bet by now you guessed it… he didn’t (according to the Prosecutor’s Office). So, if ever $75,000 is paid then Vantrease is left holding the bag for the remaining $25,000 or so. I guess there really is no honor among criminals. Here is the email verifying it:Monongalia County Victim Witness <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Ken Diviney Re: Restitution Issue
I talked with [the Prosecutor’s Office] and she said that they are not going to be able to amend the restitution on May. She said that if the defendant doesn’t agree with the amended amount then we won’t be able to get the amount. If you have questions please call her at…
So, what does ‘jointly and severely” mean? Well, as I understand it, it’s like co-signing a loan. The bank doesn’t care which one pays, but both are on the hook for it. As for the criminal restitution due to Ryan, I am no different. I don’t care either. Vantrease could pay it all, they could split it 50/50, or come up with some other formula. That’s entirely between those two.
All I know is they owe Ryan $100,000, be it jointly or severely.
I will tell you this though, I am not at all surprised by May’s actions. It validates my opinion that Jonathan May has, and continues to, shirk accountability. Would I be wrong to think of this as cowardly? Also, it wouldn’t be the first time he tried to sacrifice his former cohort, Vantrease. My
advice opinion to anyone who wants to listen is when you see a bus coming just check to make sure Jonathan May isn’t ready to push you under it (or sucker-punch you)… figuratively speaking,
So, this Friday I am attending a court-ordered procedure in West Virginia. Does anyone have a guess at how I’m feeling entering this process after seeing accountability skirted time-after-time (in my opinion)? Sure, I’ll always keep an open mind… but now, maybe not as much.
Those two are absolutely DISGUISTING
After reading this post I have so many thoughts….
Jon May and the parents that raised him to be this person must have no soul, no heart. I feel sorry for this boy who was “raised by wolves”. The mis-guidance he recieved from his parents growing up will haunt him for the rest of his life. Sadly the mis-guidance he recieved also cost Ryan and his family their lives.
I wonder how many vacations any of the May family have had since November, 2009? Have they had a weekend away? They live near the beach, have they spent a nice afternoon watching the waves even jumping in them? The Diviney family has had no breaks.
Do the Mays have any friends? How do they explain to the friends the lack of remorse, caring, or restitution coming from their family. What do they talk about at the dinner table at night? What do they talk about at neighborhood cookouts? Does anyone ask them how Ryan is doing, how do they answer?
I coud go on and on. I can’t for the life of me understand how cold hearted people work, nor do I want to.
I do agree with the above comment. Stay away from Jonathan May and his family! They will throw you under the bus and never ever look back.
Safe travels Ken.
Rhonda Morin says
I honestly don’t know about the families of these men but are their families that bad? There have been many young people who have done atrocious acts against others and they had seemingly normal upbringings and very loving families. I have not done the research so I really don’t know but are their parents really that horrific?
And do the parents need to pay the price for their adult children’s actions? I know if my stepdaughters caused this kind of pain to another human that after I was finished with them, I would have nothing to do with them and would spend every day of my life beating myself up over what I could have done differently but in the end it was her actions that caused the injury and therefore her that needed to pay the penalty.
I don’t wish to cause more heart ache, I am just making an uneducated observation.
Kathryn Beggs Howlett via Facebook says
I agree Rita, it’s a shame that the Divineys have to deal with this crap. Let’s hope they do get the $. Heaven knows it’s only a drop in the bucket.
Wow. I was too angry this morning to even reply — but I’m finding it’s not any easier to read the second (third) time around. How do kids like Van Trease and May turn into remorseless souls capable of such violence. So troubling.
God bless you and your family, Ken. I am so sorry you have to go through all this aggravation just so you can have even a modicum of justice for Ryan. Sometimes I feel our court system shows more compassion to the criminals instead of the victims. Just doesn’t seem right.
Sending you love and hugs, and continuing prayers. God give us the grace to rise above this darkness, which ebbs and flows but never quite seems to go away.
Please give Ryan a hug for me, and I hope your week is going smoothly.
Ann H Tearle says
“How do they sleep at night?” THEY DON’T CARE. We are not dealing with ‘normal’ human beings here–these guys are impaired (for whatever reason). They have no moral conscience—-they are not, by some miracle, suddenly going to wake up and become caring individuals. I don’t think they are even capable of caring–that’s how they sleep at night (and their parents too).
Prayers and love always to Team Diviney, Annie GO TEAM !!! WHOO HOO !!
Rita Caporicci Hoop via Facebook says
I don’t like this one bit. But I believe that your family will be receiving a full $100,000, one way or another. I’m sorry that you and Sue need to take so much of your precious time awayfrom Ryan and each other to address this crap though.
Carla Liberty says
First thing out of my mouth when I read this, is exactly what Gail said…..”How do they sleep at night?” Shaking my head…..
Rhonda Morin says
It is freightening what people can do and sleep well. I have far more experience what people can do to their children and sleep soundly at night, disgusts me. If Ryan ever gets a penny I would be shocked but wouldn’t the best thing that could happen be that the one idiot goes after the other idiot and somehow they both hurt each other ‘jointly and severely’? Yes, evil I am. Being born in Morgantown and being from that area of West Virginia all I can say is that I am glad that neither of them are from West Virginia. Sad that my state has to pay to put the one up for 10 years.
Safe travels Ken, will be praying for a calm heart. I honestly don’t know how you can even be in the same space…. infuriates me.
Hi Ken, maybe you’ve addressed this previously, but when (if?) either of these two gets a job, is there a way to have their wages garnished, so restitution gets paid whether they like it or not?
Ryan's Rally LLC says
Yes, there is. But I’d probably use this as a last resort.
Glad that you might have SOME options down the road, then. But I agree with other commenters – this is appalling and you shouldn’t have to WORK to get this money. Shameful.
gail doyle says
Ken, Will be thinking of you Friday and can only pray that some justice can be served .Don’t their “parents” have any responsibility in this matter??? How do they all sleep at night??
These two are disgusting. Poor execuse for a human being. They will never be accountable. The two criminals and their families actions speak volumes about “who” they are.
Ken, is there any one of us who thinks Ryan will ever see a penny offered from any of them? And what then happens to the criminals? Jail, or can their salaries be attached? I hope it is the latter — praying it so, actually! I would say to the perpetrators, “Think how much better you will feel when your debt to Ryan is paid,” but I do not think any of them have the least amount of guilt. Not one of them has been heard from or has made any attempt at restitution! How can this many kids be so poorly reared? Is there any hope that they will ever see the error of their ways? Scary!
Off the soap box now and envisioning our Sue on TV with check in hand! See it! Believe it! Pray for it to happen! Thank you for your letters and prayers.