Hamer receives probation for drug possession

MARSHALL — A Lincoln County commissioner found guilty last month of drug possession charges got up to five years probation, with conditions including completing community service hours and 30 days in jail. However, at a sentencing hearing Tuesday, an attorney for Richard Hamer said Hamer might file an appeal, and raised questions about whether Hamer should serve the jail time.

Hamer was convicted Jan. 3 of charges of fifth degree controlled substance crime and possession of drug paraphernalia. Last year, police searched a Hendricks shop building Hamer owned and found a little less than three grams of methamphetamine, as well as other drug paraphernalia.

Because Hamer didn’t have prior drug offenses, he qualified for a stay of adjudication, said District Court Judge Michelle Dietrich. Hamer was fined $200 for the drug paraphernalia charge, and received up to five years probation for the drug possession charge. The conditions of Hamer’s probation would include that he pay a $300 fine, complete 200 hours of community service, and serve 30 days in jail.

Hamer’s attorney Jacob Birkholz told the judge Hamer might be appealing his conviction, and asked whether in that case his jail time should be stayed.

Unlike a fine, “The freedom of an individual is not something that can be undone,” if Hamer is acquitted in an appeal, Birkholz said.

Dietrich said she would wait to make a decision on that request until an appeal was filed. She said Hamer had until March 11 to file an appeal.


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