A drug defendant pleaded guilty to a felony charge Monday in Huron County Common Pleas Court.
Avon resident Sarah E. Crabtree, 24, was convicted of possession of heroin. She also didn't claim any ownership of the white 2002 Mercury minivan she was driving during the June 26 incident at the Firelands Manor mobile home park in Wakeman.
Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Dina Shenker said the van belongs to a "known drug trafficker" and while the Huron County Sheriff's Office has attempted to call him, the man hasn't returned any calls. The prosecutor requested the van be forfeited as part of the plea deal, which included the state dismissing the other felony on Crabtree's indictment, trafficking in heroin.
"We're disavowing any claims to the vehicle," said Huron County Public Defender David Longo, adding his client doesn't care if the van is forfeited eventually since it's not hers.
Detective Sgt. Josh Querin and Deputy Eric Bardar were in the courthouse Monday ready to testify for a hearing on a motion to suppress evidence. However, Crabtree's attorney dismissed the motion in lieu of the plea deal.
Wakeman Police Chief Tim Hunker assisted Bardar with the investigation.
On Sept. 26, Crabtree drove to one of the mobile homes and authorities found heroin in her possession in the van, Shenker said. After hearing the prosecutor's assessment of the facts, Longo said the heroin actually was found on Crabtree's co-defendant, Katherine R. Frioud, 24, also of Avon.
"But it was a joint enterprise," Longo also told Judge Jim Conway.
Crabtree, who doesn't have any prior felony convictions, said those circumstances are true.
Officers arrested Crabtree and Frioud and seized several doses of heroin along with syringes and spoons as evidence.
"They were both out on bond from Lorain County for possession of drugs there," Querin said after the arrests. "They both advised us they had their home raided in Lorain and a substantial amount of heroin and crack was seized (about May)."
Crabtree, who earlier posted a $10,000 bond, will be sentenced Jan. 22.
"We're not going to oppose community control," Shenker said.
Community control could include a jail term and a mandatory driver's license suspension. Crabtree was convicted of a fifth-degree felony, which is punishable by six to 12 months behind bars.
Due to a domestic violence conviction, Conway told Crabtree that could be a factor that would make her eligible for a prison term. The defendant has a pending sentencing for an unspecified Lorain County felony case.
Frioud also remains out, having a posted a $10,000 bond. She is charged with one count each of trafficking in heroin and possession of heroin.