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Heroin dealer considered a flight risk, has bond revoked

Cary Ashby • Sep 5, 2013 at 9:01 AM

A convicted heroin dealer is being held in custody without bond on an allegation he absconded the supervision of his probation officer for a year.

Matthew L. Carter, 27, of 5571 U.S. 20, Lot 49, Wakeman, pleaded guilty in February 2012 to trafficking in heroin for a Dec. 8, 211 transaction involving a confidential informant. He later agreed to attend Teen Challenge, a year-long, faith-based substance abuse program, as part of his three years of probation.

"He absconded supervision one year ago and had not contacted his probation officer during that time," Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Daivia Kasper said during Wednesday's hearing.

When Carter was arrested in August, "he tested positive for a cornucopia of drugs," she added.

"He was in his mother's home in Wakeman the entire time," Huron County Public Defender David Longo said about the alleged absconding.

About two weeks before going to Teen Challenge, Carter was charged with menacing in connection with threatening to kill people in a residence at the Riverview Mobile Home Park. Huron County Sheriff's Sgt. Steve Shupp and two other deputies responded to a caller who alleged Carter was high on bath salts March 14, 2012 and threatening to kill everyone in the trailer with a knife.

Carter, when interviewed by deputies, denied making any death threats, but admitted he argued with his mother earlier that day.

"Carter also admitted to ingesting a substance that he described as a herb. He said he had purchased the 'herb' from a store located in a surrounding county. Carter was not able to provide the package in which the 'herb' had come in," Shupp said in his report.

The suspect's mother came to her son's defense soon after his arrest and was interviewed by the Reflector. She said Carter doesn't use bath salts and he wasn't arrested due to being under the influence of the illegal drugs.

"My son said it was bad stuff because he had friends who did it," Carter's mother said.

In March 2010, Carter was sentenced to six months in prison for trafficking in heroin.

Longo talked about the Teen Challenge situation in court Thursday. He said Carter left the Youngstown facility at one point, returned but left again later. Teen Challenge is for people of all ages who face a lifetime of addiction.

"It wasn't for him," Longo said.

He also addressed Carter's suspected positive drug test.

"Except for the THC, everything else is prescribed," Longo said.

The public defender recommended the court consider not jailing Carter because he is believed to have lung cancer and is scheduled to have a biopsy in about two weeks.

Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway said Carter is a possible flight risk and revoked his bond. His next hearing is Sept. 30.

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