Ironton woman#8217;s drug trial delayed

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 7, 2008

The trial of an Ironton woman accused of drug peddling was put on hold Wednesday after her attorney raised concerns about her mental health.

Chania Brown, 25, of 1001 S. 10th St., was to have begun July 14. During a pretrial conference Wednesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court, Brown’s attorney, Sterling Gill, told Judge Charles Cooper that Brown has “some serious mental health issues” and is on pschotrophic drugs to combat them.

He asked for a mental competency evaluation, a request Cooper granted. A new trial will be scheduled once the evaluation is complete.

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Brown is charged with three counts of trafficking in crack cocaine.

Also Wednesday, Tyler McAngus, 21, of 517 N. Sixth St., admitted he violated his community controlled sanctions (CCS), or probation, by getting arrested on new felony charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. Judge D. Scott Bowling sentenced him to four years in prison, but if he stays out of trouble, McAngus could be granted judicial release after six months provided he is admitted to an in-house treatment facility. McAngus will serve four years community controlled sanctions following his release from prison.

“I would point out that in January of this year, Mr. McAngus violated his community controlled sanctions so this is his second violation in a six-month period,” Assistant Lawrence County prosecutor Mack Anderson said in recommending the prison and treatment sentence for McAngus. “The state recognizes Mr. McAngus has a very serious alcohol problem. We’re trying to recommend a sentence that both punishes the defendant and gives him an opportunity to get help for his alcohol problem.”

McAngus’ attorney, Chris Delawder, said his client is grateful for the chance to get his drinking under control.

“He has strong family support. He seems to me to really want to get this thing turned around,” Delawder said. “He knows he can’t keep coming back down here. He knows the court won’t tolerate it.”

Bowling pointed out that McAngus “started his felony career off with a real bang,” in that his original conviction was for complicity to aggravated robbery.

Bowling cautioned McAngus that “you won’t have much of a life if things don’t change. You’ll be spending it behind bars.”

John McHaffie II, 50, of Huntington, W.Va., pleaded guilty to an amended count of misdemeanor attempt to possess marijuana. In exchange for his guilty plea, one count of having a weapon under a disability was dismissed. Cooper sentenced him to six months in jail but suspended the sentence and placed McHaffie on three years probation.

In another drug case, Melody York, 36, of 119-1/2 N. Fourth St., Ironton, pleaded guilty to three counts of complicity to trafficking in drugs. Bowling sentenced her to four years community controlled sanctions (CCS) and ordered her to surrender her driver’s license for six months. He also fined her $15,000.