A local man accused of making methamphetamine is scheduled to go to trial Nov. 29 in Huron County Common Pleas Court.
Jason E. Collier, 33, of 4265 Ohio 61, Lot 38, Plymouth, was in court Monday for his arraignment.
A Huron County grand jury indicted him last week on one count of illegal manufacture of drugs in connection with a Feb. 13 incident. Collier has a similar, pending charge stemming from the same investigation led by Willard Police Detective Jeremy Draper. That METRICH drug task force investigation lasted a little more than two weeks, resulting in the Feb. 13 arrests of Collier and his then-girlfriend and co-defendant, Andrea D. Pruitt, 33.
The pair purchased more than 9 grams of pseudoephedrine from about 12 pharmacies in Norwalk, Willard, Shelby and Mansfield between September and January, according to Draper's warrant. Pseudoephedrine is considered a crucial ingredient in making meth, a highly addictive illegal stimulant often cooked in homes with flammable components.
Judge Jim Conway said he was setting Collier's trial date and pretrial hearings (on Oct. 29 and Nov. 19) with the idea there would be a plea deal between Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler and defense attorney Daniel Wightman.
Assistant Prosecutor Richard Woodruff has said this new third-degree felony stems from Collier possessing meth and isn't double jeopardy because he hasn't been convicted of the other charge, a second-degree felony. If convicted of the new charge, Collier faces nine months to three years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.
Collier, who is out of jail, having posted a $20,000 bond, is subject to random drug screens.
Pruitt, in early May, pleaded guilty to attempted illegal manufacture of drugs. On June 29, she was ordered to complete the Christian-based Teen Challenge substance abuse program as part of her three years of intense probation.