CANTON — After nearly a week of testimony, a jury took less than two hours Wednesday to find a Hermon woman guilty of felony drug possession in connection to an Ogdensburg meth bust.
Kelsey Rubadue, 26, of 3857 County Route 6, Hermon, was found guilty of second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and third-degree unlawful manufacturing of methamphetamine.
She now faces 6 to 14 years in prison as a second-felony offender. District Attorney Gary M. Pasqua said the jury began deliberations at 4:45 p.m. Wednesday and came back with its unanimous guilty verdict at 6:25 p.m.
According to the April 3 arrest report from Ogdensburg City Police, the arrests followed a raid at the 717 Knox St., Ogdensburg, residence of her codefendants, Harold and Melissa Planty, at approximately 1:30 a.m., where police recovered a one-pot methamphetamine lab as well as several components of those labs.
Mr. Planty, 44, and Mrs. Planty, 41, each took a plea deal with the district attorney’s office.
Mr. Planty was sentenced on Sept. 30 to five years in prison with two years of post-release supervision for his Aug. 6 guilty plea to third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, the reduced count of the second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance lodged against him.
On April 2 in the city of Ogdensburg, Mr. Planty was in possession of an eighth of an ounce or more of methamphetamine with the intent to sell it.
Mrs. Planty pleaded guilty on Aug. 7 to the A-II felony of second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and was released under probation supervision.
As part of her plea deal, she will be placed on one year of interim probation on Oct. 21 and, if she complies, she will be allowed to vacate her plea and plead to the reduced B felony of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and be sentenced to probation. If unsuccessful, she faces 6 to 14 years in prison.
Ms. Rubadue declined a deal on Sept. 9 to plead guilty to the reduced third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance charge, with the court committing to send her to prison for five years with three years of post-release supervision. The court would have also recommended the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision to allow her to participate in any programs they deem her eligible for.
Her trial began Sept. 27 and continued Monday afternoon, following Mr. Planty’s prison sentencing. In a statement after the verdict, Mr. Pasqua said his office will continue to aggressively prosecute individuals who are engaged in the trafficking and possession of narcotics in St. Lawrence County, “especially the possession and manufacturing of methamphetamine.”
“Methamphetamine is a danger not only to those who use and produce the drug, but also to anyone in the vicinity to where it is being manufactured due to the volatile nature of the manufacturing process,” Mr. Pasqua said. “Several law enforcement officers are still suffering from health issues as a consequence of their exposure to toxic fumes present during the incident for which this defendant was convicted. Hopefully this verdict, and subsequent sentence, will help to deter others from engaging in this dangerous activity and help to steer them toward getting whatever help they need to try and fight their addiction to this deadly drug.”
The case was investigated by Detective David LeBeau and the Ogdensburg Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant DAs Sara Charpentier, Sasha Mascarenhas and Joshua HaberkornHalm.
Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 27, and Ms. Rubadue was sent to St. Lawrence County jail without bail.