Six persons — five of them charged with offenses related to the possession of the highly-addictive drug methamphetamine — were sentenced in Letcher Circuit Court last week after entering guilty pleas. They are:
• Stephanie Cornett, 32, of 205 Coal River Road, Cumberland, who was sentenced to two consecutive terms of supervised probation for five years each after pleading guilty to July 2016 charges of trafficking in a controlled substance (amended from a charge of manufacturing methamphetamine), unlawful possession of a meth precursor, and buying or possessing drug paraphernalia and to March 2020 charges of promoting contraband inside the Letcher County Jail.
Terms of Cornett’s probation, which include the requirement that she enroll in and successfully complete 365 days of long-term inpatient drug rehabilitation, were set after Letcher Circuit Judge James W. Craft II agreed to suspend the 10-year and five-year prison sentences to which Cornett had agreed to serve for the 2016 and 2020 charges.
• Ryan Eldridge, 33, of 573 Cane Hollow Road at Camp Branch, who was sentenced to a total of nine years of supervised probation after pleading guilty to charges contained in three separate indictments — two returned in 2017 and one in 2018.
In one of the 2017 cases, a one-year prison sentence imposed on Eldridge was amended to supervised probation for two years after Eldridge pleaded guilty of first-degree possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine), second degree possession of a controlled substance (drug not specified), third-degree possession of a controlled substance (drug not specified), possession of drug paraphernalia, driving on a license suspended because of DUI and other traffic-related charges.
In the other 2017 case, a five-year prison sentence was amended to supervised probation for five years after Eldridge pleaded guilty to flagrant non-support during a period stretching from October 2013 to October 2017.
In the 2018 case, Eldridge pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property valued at $1,479. A one-year prison sentence in this case was amended to two years supervised probation. Judge Craft ordered that in addition to Eldridge serving all three terms of probation consecutively, he must submit to weekly drug screens for six months and complete 60 days of home incarceration with electronic monitoring.
• A five-year jail term handed down to Brandon Carson Hart, 35, of 621 Sturgill Branch, Whitesburg, was amended to supervised probation for five years as part of his guilty plea to 2019 charges of possession of a controlled substance (hydrocodone), possession of drug paraphernalia, terroristic threatening, and retaliating against a participant in a legal process.
The September 2019 indictment against Hart charged him with threatening to kill his mother, who he believed would be a witness against him in a criminal case. The crime allegedly occurred in the presence of a Letcher County sheriff ’s deputy. Under terms of Hart’s probation, he must submit to random drug screens and successfully complete the drug court program administered by the Letcher Circuit Court.
• An 18-month term in prison was imposed on Shawn W. Holbrook of 2738 Highway 317, Jackhorn, who pleaded guilty to May 3, 2019 charges of possessing methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia and a number of traffic-related charges.
• Pamela Sue Mays, 43, of 137 Fall Drive, Thornton, was sentenced to five years of supervised probation after she pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree possession of methamphetamine, second-degree possession of Suboxone, and possession of drug paraphernalia. The probation is a reduction of a one-year jail term and requires Mays to submit to random drug screens and continue her enrollment in a long-term inpatient drug rehabilitation facility.
• Shawna Brooke Tackett, 19, of 172 Whitetail Road, Roxana, was sentenced to serve supervised probation for a total of five years after pleading guilty to charges contained in two separate indictments, both of them returned in 2019.
On March 11, 2019, Tackett was charged with complicity to theft by unlawful taking (over $500 but less than $10,000) and with third-degree burglary after helping a male accomplice break into an automobile parked outside the Letcher County Recreation Center in Whitesburg and steal cash, an iPhone X and other property valued at $800. A part of her plea agreement, a five-year prison sentence was amended to five years of supervised probation that requires Tackett to submit to random drug testing, repay the $800 to her victims, and successfully complete 180 days of inpatient drug rehabilitation or successfully complete the drug court program operated by the Letcher Circuit Court.
On July 10, 2019, Tackett was charged with first-degree possession of methamphetamine (two grams), second-degree possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. A three-year prison sentence in that case was amended to a second five-year period of probation to be served concurrently with the other probation.