Defense attorney says local woman has 'made good progress'

Cary Ashby • Jul 20, 2014 at 6:07 AM

The public defender gave his client, Samantha T. Robinson, credit for doing as well as she can -- given that she has a suspended driver's license.

"It sounds like she's made good progress," Huron County Public Defender David Longo said.

Robinson has a job, which is about a 10-minute walk from her Plymouth home. She said she had been working in Bucyrus, but it was too long of a distance to manage without a license.

"I'm still in treatment," she added, referring to a Mansfield-based substance abuse program.

Robinson attends the intensive out-patient program three times a week and counseling once a week. She said it was difficult to find a job that would accommodate such a schedule.

In late March, Robinson, 43, pleaded guilty to attempting to steal Percocet pills from the Willard man whose house she was hired to clean.

Her sister and co-defendant, Melinda S. Oney, 46, of 37 Bell St., Plymouth, pleaded guilty March 6 to attempted receiving stolen property (dangerous drugs). She and Robinson must pay the victim $1,478 in restitution and were fined $250. Each defendant also must undergo psychiatric counseling at their own cost. Robinson's license suspension is from a separate court case.

On May 15, Robinson appeared in Huron County Common Pleas Court for her sentencing hearing, but Judge Jim Conway rescheduled the proceeding once he learned she had a job prospect.

"You did have a relationship with the victim that facilitated the offense," Conway said Thursday.

The Huron County Sheriff's Office recovered 69 Percocet pills at Robinson's residence during a consent search.

The victim earlier told the Reflector the women reportedly stole his jeans, special medical socks, some shirts and all of his medication.

On the morning of Nov. 20, the victim drove Robinson to Willard so they could do some Thanksgiving Day shopping. Oney claimed to be sick and requested to stay on the man's couch while he and Robinson went shopping.

When the man and Robinson returned home, the victim said he found a garbage bag and hamper full of his belongings near the back door where he entered his house. He recognized a blanket he keeps on his sofa and demanded to see what was inside the bag and hamper.

"I started to go through it -- and got clobbered by Melinda," the man said. "I was beat up and robbed.

"They both took off down the road (on foot)," he said. "It took a while to (call) the sheriff's office because they hid my phones."

The following day, the victim said he went to his doctor, who informed he had "big lump" on his back and black-and-blue bruises.

Robinson was placed on three years of intensive probation Thursday. Credited with being in jail for 22 days, she faces a 90-day discretionary sentence, meaning her probation officer has the option of when to impose the term. The officer also can ask the judge to waive part or all of it if Robinson does well on community control. A probation violation could result in a one-year prison term.

"It's going to be important to continue your efforts with counseling," Conway told Robinson.

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