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Officer to seek indictment in dismissed meth case

SALYERSVILLE – While a methamphetamine-related case was dismissed last week, the arresting officer clarified the reason behind the dismissal and assured that he will be sending the case to grand jury.

On November 2, Salyersville Police Department’s Officer Mike Nickels pulled over Sandra Dee Baldwin, 47, of Paintsville, for allegedly weaving across the lines on the road. According to the arrest citation, Baldwin admitted to smoking methamphetamine a couple hours earlier and reportedly failed a field sobriety test. 

Nickel’s citation indicated that there was a child in the back seat, where law enforcement found a meth pipe, as well as methamphetamine in a bag of snacks, and two meth pipes in a fast food bag where they had food. There was a yellow unknown substance in a small container, many baggies and a total of five meth pipes throughout the truck. 

On the day of her arrest she admitted to police to buying methamphetamine in Johnson County.

In a preliminary hearing held on Monday, November 13, a motion to dismiss the charges was granted, citing that a subpoena had been issued but Officer Nickels was not present for court. The case was dismissed without prejudice, meaning the charges can be brought back up in court. 

On Friday, November 17, Officer Nickels contacted the Salyersville Independent and stated that he was unable to show up for the court date because he was in a mandatory training in Richmond and could not leave for any reason (even missing a funeral). He said that he had not been subpoenaed in the case, and that he had made the court aware of his mandatory training dates several weeks prior to the court hearing. He also stated that he will be taking this case to the grand jury to be considered for an indictment against Baldwin.

Baldwin was originally charged with careless driving (a violation), operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol/drugs, first offense (a Class B misdemeanor); possession of a controlled substance (a Class A misdemeanor); controlled substance prescription not in original container (a Class B misdemeanor); endangering the welfare of a minor (a Class A misdemeanor); first-degree possession of a controlled substance, first offense, methamphetamine (a Class D felony); first-degree possession of a controlled substance, first offense, drug unspecified (a Class D felony); third-degree possession of a controlled substance, drug unspecified (a Class A misdemeanor); first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance, first offense (methamphetamine, less than two grams) (a Class D felony); and buying/possessing drug paraphernalia (a Class A misdemeanor).


Editor's Note: The indictment or charge of a person by a grand jury or otherwise is an accusation only and that person is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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