A Washington C.H. woman was sentenced Monday to 10 days in the Fayette County Jail after she plead guilty to possession of heroin and illegal possession of drug paraphernalia.
Stephanie S. Leasure, 32, was also ordered to two years of community control, a six month driver’s license suspension, and payment of fees and costs. A 12-month prison sentence was suspended.
Leasure was arrested Dec. 16, 2015 after a Fayette County Sheriff’s Office deputy initiated a traffic stop on a white 2005 Chrysler 300c that was traveling eastbound on Gibbs Avenue. The reporting deputy sheriff was familiar with Leasure and knew that she had no driver’s license to operate a motor vehicle, according to the report.
Leasure told the officer she was driving to an appointment at Fayette Recovery, but dispatch confirmed Leasure did not have a scheduled appointment that day. A Washington Municipal Court probation officer advised to take Leasure to jail on a probation violation. The probation officer stated he had received information that Leasure was driving another person who was in the car around town to make heroin deliveries.
A K-9 was brought to check the vehicle. A small straw used to ingest heroin into the body was located on the left inside pocket of Leasure, according to the report.
Officers located two pop cans in the center console. The pop can sitting next to the driver’s seat contained a small baggie, and Leasure stated she had swallowed the heroin inside the baggie because she got scared when the police stopped them, according to reports.
Leasure was transported to the hospital for medical treatment.
An officer reported finding crack cocaine on the passenger side front floorboard where the passenger had been seated. She was transported to Fayette County Jail.
Once released from the hospital, Leasure was transported to the Fayette County Jail where she was provided a complaint and advised of her court date.
During her conviction and sentence Monday, Leasure tested positive for cocaine, THC, and Suboxone.
“Because of my history with heroin, whenever I have a really bad craving, I do take a small amount of Suboxone just so I won’t touch heroin. The cocaine I really do not understand. I don’t touch cocaine. I don’t know how it got into my system, it could’ve been in the marijuana, I’m not sure,” said Leasure in the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas.
Leasure’s attorney, Susan R. Wollscheid, said Leasure had recently divorced her husband and lost custody of her children, and currently resides in a homeless shelter. Leasure is in the process of applying for community assistance to get a home and is committed to paying the first month’s rent and deposit, according to statements made in court by Leasure’s attorney.
“She also has a vehicle and has had some work experience during this time. She did have a seasonal job, I believe that’s come to an end and she is actively seeking work so if the court would permit her to have a community control term to complete and allow her to remain out of jail, she could go ahead and continue working, get the house, get on her feet. I believe that she is more than willing to do any outpatient treatment that the court would ask of her,” said Wollscheid.
“My life is turned upside down and I’m for the first time trying to get on my feet. I’ve been privileged my whole life, I’ve always had people take care of me, and this is the first time I’ve been able to care of myself. So if you could please give me this opportunity to prove to the court and my family that I can do this,” said Leasure.
The state recommendation was to place Leasure on community control. Judge Steven Beathard of the Fayette County Common Pleas Court stated that Leasure had told the probation department she was currently enrolled, but according to records she had not been there since Jan. 27.
“I’ve been in contact,” said Leasure.
“Well driving by Fayette Recovery and calling them on the phone isn’t treatment and the proof is in the pudding, so-to-speak. Here this morning: you’re self-medicating on Suboxone, which is a trafficked narcotic, that’s a felony offense for having possession of Suboxone,” said Beathard. “Here’s what we’re going to do. I’m going to place you in jail for 10 days so you can detox. They will be in touch with Fayette Recovery.”
Judge Beathard said the jail would assist Leasure in continuing to contact Community Action, for her housing assistance needs, as well.
Beathard asked Leasure when she had last used heroin.
“It was over six months ago,” Leasure said. She was then asked if she had looked into a program.
“I never really thought I had that bad of a problem,” said Leasure.
“You have an opiate addiction,” said Beathard.
“Yes sir,” said Leasure.
“You may be six months from heroin, but Suboxone is an opiate,” said Beathard, noting that any additional program she may seek later for treatment is up to her.
Reach Ashley at the Record-Herald office at (740) 313-0356 or on Twitter @ashbunton