Woman Admits to Sneaking Methamphetamine into Albany County Jail
A woman who prosecutors say snuck over 12 grams of methamphetamine into the Albany County Detention Center after she was arrested on a methamphetamine possession charge in July pleaded guilty to a to a felony charge Thursday in Albany County District Court.
Jennifer Selena Gonzales, 35, pleaded guilty to possession of methamphetamine. As part of a plea deal, a second methamphetamine possession charge filed in a separate criminal action will be dropped. Three misdemeanor charges pending in Albany County Circuit Court will also be dismissed.
However, the state is not obligated to make a sentencing recommendation under that plea agreement, so Gonzales could face the maximum penalty of 7 years in prison and a $15,000 fine.
Gonzales was arrested after a Wyoming Highway Patrol trooper stopped her for speeding on July 2. Court documents say the trooper smelled marijuana and Gonzales handed the trooper a 5-inch joint.
Gonzales reportedly told the trooper she wasn't sure which items in the car were hers, since was driving for Uber and someone had left a "purse with a weird box in it" in the car.
A leopard-print box inside the purse contained a spoon and scale with white powder residue, according to court documents. That powder reportedly tested positive for methamphetamine the next day.
Court documents go on to say 3.5 grams of methamphetamine was found in a small plastic bag in the leopard-print box.
A key in a zippered pocket inside the purse locked and unlocked the driver's door on the Kia, according to the affidavit.
Gonzales was booked into the Albany County Detention Center where she remained for three days before her Circuit Court arraignment July 5. Court documents say that day, a confidential informant told deputies that Gonzales was hiding methamphetamine on her person.
A strip search reportedly turned up nothing, as did a search of Gonzales' cell. The deputy talked to the confidential informant again, who said the methamphetamine was "far inside [Gonzales] where it wouldn't be seen during a strip search."
A sergeant and lieutenant interviewed Gonzales and reportedly learned that Gonzales had something in her vaginal area. A pelvic exam performed at a medical facility revealed a plastic bag containing 12.6 grams of methamphetamine.
Gonzales told Judge Jeffrey Donnell in court Thursday that she intended to sell the methamphetamine to a friend before the traffic stop and was scared that the trooper would find it.
Defense attorney David Corman requested a reduction in Gonzales' $10,000 cash bond, saying she couldn't pay.
Prosecutor Kurt Britzius objected to any bond reduction, given Gonzales' lack of ties in Laramie. Donnell agreed and continued bond at $10,000 cash.