One-time drug screen advocate is arrested

Grand jury hands down five-count secret indictment against woman, including heroin charge.
Cary Ashby
Nov 7, 2013

A former Norwalk woman who once advocated for drug testing in schools faces five felony charges.

Stephanie L. (Broz) Cleveland, 27, of Sandusky, was arrested by the Norwalk Police Department about 1:40 p.m. Tuesday. She faces a five-count secret indictment issued by a Huron County grand jury Friday.

Cleveland is charged with trafficking in Alprazalam in connection with a Nov. 20, 2012 incident and two counts of trafficking in Suboxone stemming from a Nov. 21, 2012 offense. She also faces one count each of possession of methadone and possession of heroin, both in connection with a July 24 incident. Norwalk police handled the investigations.

The defendant entered "not guilty" pleas to all the charges during Wednesday's arraignment in Huron County Common Pleas Court. Her trial date is Jan. 21.

"I was contacted by Stephanie (on Tuesday) night. I believe I'll be retained," defense attorney Reese Wineman said.

Cleveland must post a $20,000 bond before being released from the Huron County Jail. She is subject to random drug screens.

In late September 2008, Cleveland was sentenced to three years in prison for trafficking in heroin. She forfeited her 2001 Honda Accord to the state. Cleveland was arrested June 5, 2008 after she went to Columbus and bought 41 balloons, or doses, of heroin and as she returned to Huron County, she called various people to make delivery arrangements.

The arrest happened during a Benedict Avenue traffic stop when her then 2-month-old son was in the car. The boy was placed with Huron County Children Services and later, his paternal grandmother.

"I learned a lot in prison about myself. I'll take that and move on," Cleveland said during a June 2010 hearing about early release. "Any extra help I'm grateful for. ... What was supposed to happen happened."

Cleveland also told the court she was confident she could stay sober.

In June 2010, Judge Jim Conway released her from prison into a community-based corrections facility. Defendants spend four to six months in a CBCF, a form of prison which focuses on education and substance abuse treatment. The judge had complimented Cleveland for "doing very well with your time in prison" and completing "a good number of programs."

"(She) did well before, but has fallen back into some problems," Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler said Wednesday.

Wineman, also at Wednesday's hearing, said Cleveland has been participating in the outpatient program at Firelands Counseling & Recovery Services and hasn't had any positive drug tests since July. She also is attending the Elite Cosmetology school in Norwalk.

Her 2010 assertion about remaining sober wasn't the first time she went public about her drug problems, which started in high school.

In October 2006, Cleveland promoted random drug testing as a "preventive and rehabilitative" measure during a Norwalk City Schools board of education meeting. She had returned recently from rehab and had been clean for about two months.