Samantha Dawn Lefort, 24, of Winburne, who is accused of trafficking methamphetamine, had all charges bound over to court following a preliminary hearing before District Judge James Glass yesterday at Centralized Court held at the Clearfield County Jail.
Lefort is charged with possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, an ungraded felony; intentional possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia, both of which are ungraded misdemeanors.
Trooper Christopher Pifer of the Rockview-based State Police testified that on May 8 he was driving on US-322 in Decatur Township when saw Lefort riding in the front passenger seat of a pickup truck traveling in the opposite direction. Pifer said he knew Lefort had several warrants for her arrest in both Clearfield and Centre counties, and he initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle.
The driver of the vehicle was Brandon Corman, 27, of Morrisdale and Pifer verified he was driving with suspended license. Lefort did not have identification but she did give her correct birthday and Pifer said he verified her identity using a JNET/driver’s license photo.
The two were removed from the vehicle and Corman handed over a bandanna containing a used methamphetamine pipe. Corman was handcuffed and Pifer asked if there was anything in the vehicle that he should be concerned with and Corman said there was a small amount of methamphetamine in the driver’s side door pocket.
Pifer said he retrieved the methamphetamine from the door pocket and continued to search the vehicle. On the rear passenger side seat there was a can that looked like an unopened 24-ounce Arizona Iced Tea can, but the can actually had a screw off top and inside he found six individually wrapped grams of methamphetamine, along with several unused small plastic baggies commonly used for packaging methamphetamine. Pifer said he asked Lefort who owned the can and she said it was hers.
During cross examination by Lefort’s attorney, Leanne Nedza of the public defender’s office, Nedza asked Pifer how he asked Lefort about the ownership of the can and Pifer said when he found the can he asked Lefort who owned it and she said it was hers. He then read Lefort her Miranda rights and asked her again who owned the can and she again said it was hers.
On the passenger side floorboard where Lefort was seated was a black backpack containing numerous small plastic baggies similar to the ones in the can, a digital scale, four glass methamphetamine pipes, a marijuana grinder and a brass marijuana pipe.
Nedza also asked if it were possible that the scale was for personal use to make sure she wasn’t getting “ripped off” in purchasing drugs and Pifer said it was possible. She also asked if it is possible that other kinds of legal drugs that do not leave any residue were in the empty baggies and said it is possible. However, Pifer said the scales, the numerous baggies and the found methamphetamine led him to conclude that Lefort was selling methamphetamine.
During closing arguments, Nedza asked that the felony delivery of methamphetamine charge be thrown out because the methamphetamine was for personal use. She also noted that in the court filing the possession with intent to deliver charge was graded as a misdemeanor and the possession charge as a felony and said this is incorrect and the felony charge should be withdrawn.
Assistant District Attorney Warren Mikesell said that was done in error.
Glass bound over all charges to court, saying many of these questions are up for a jury to decide or a common pleas court judge. Glass said the Supreme Court has ruled that typos are not enough to get charges thrown out, but said she can take it up with a county judge. He said Nedza will be filing other motions to the court and she can include them together.
Bail was kept at $20,000 monetary, which was not posted and Lefort remains in Clearfield County Jail.
Corman was also charged with intentional possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and driving with a suspended license. His preliminary hearing is set for July 17.