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Woman sentenced for drug smuggling

September 22, 2012
By DEANNE JOHNSON - Staff Writer (djohnson@mojonews.com) , Morning Journal News

LISBON - A woman who took drugs into the county jail in 2010 was sentenced to one year in prison on Friday.

Michelle Byers, 33, Chester Avenue, Wellsville, did not make a statement prior to sentencing for illegal conveyance of drugs of abuse onto the grounds of a detention facility, a third-degree felony.

Assistant Prosecutor Timothy McNicol said there is little doubt there is a drug problem out at the jail, and a message needed to be sent. He requested the one-year prison sentence for Byers.

Byers' defense attorney Jennifer Gorby asked Judge C. Ashley Pike to consider sending her client to the Eastern Ohio Correctional Center instead of prison, noting the programs at EOCC would benefit someone like Byers, who admits she has a drug problem.

"This is a serious offense," Pike said. "You had to know what you were doing was wrong."

Pike urged Byers to take advantage of any programs available to her at the state prison with the possibility of being released early if she completes them.

According to court documents Byers brought cocaine concealed inside a body cavity in a baggie onto the property of the Columbiana County Jail when she was being booked on outstanding warrants on Nov. 18, 2010. She had faced up to three years in prison on the charge, which she pleaded to in July.

Additionally, following her hearing on Friday, she was served a warrant, which Gorby said was for unpaid fines in East Liverpool Municipal Court.

 
 

 

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