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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Woman gets 15 years on heroin charge

  • A Rolla woman who was convicted earlier this year of attempting to sell heroin was sentenced to 15 years in prison Tuesday.
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  • A Rolla woman who was convicted earlier this year of attempting to sell heroin was sentenced to 15 years in prison Tuesday.
    Ashlee Smith, 27, will serve her sentence in the Department of Corrections, without eligibility for probation or parole, 25th Circuit Judge William E. Hickle decided.
    Smith was found guilty in March in Phelps County Circuit Court on the charge of possession with the intent to distribute heroin, a Class B felony. She had previously waived her right to a jury trial and instead the case was decided by Hickle.
    Phelps County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Brendon Fox, who tried the case, argued for the lengthy sentence, noting what he feels is a serious heroin problem in the county.
    “Each year, Phelps County has more than 200 overdoses resulting in approximately 12 deaths because of heroin dealers like Ashlee Smith,” Fox argued.
    According to the prosecutor’s office, Smith begged for leniency in her sentencing.
    The prosecutor’s office stated that Smith was arrested last year for stealing at Country Mart by Spo. Jessie Hoyt, of the Rolla Police Department, after Hoyt observed Smith trying to dispose of a small zippered pouch.
    After seizing the pouch, Hoyt located heroin and paraphernalia, a news release from the prosecutor’s office stated.
    Smith was later interviewed by Spo. Steven Gray, of the RPD, where she confessed to possessing the heroin and intending to sell it to specific people.
    Phelps County Prosecuting Attorney John Beger said he hopes long sentences will serve as a warning to potential drug dealers. “If you sell drugs in our community, you will be caught, you will be prosecuted, and you will go to prison,” Beger said.

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