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Front Page » May 19, 2009 » Carbon County News » Judge sentences former drug court tracker to serve jail time
Published 2,013 days ago

Judge sentences former drug court tracker to serve jail time


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By LYNNDA JOHNSON
Sun Advocate editor

On May 13, the 7th District Court sentenced a former county drug court tracker to serve 120 days in jail in connection with four felony level criminal convictions on third degree custodial sexual relations and tampering with evidence charges.

Last Wednesday, 42-year-old Melanie Madill appeared for pronouncement of judgment in a formal criminal complaint containing one third degree felony level custodial sexual relations count and three separate third degree tampering with evidence offenses.

Judge Lyle R. Anderson presided on the district court bench and Carbon County Attorney Gene Strate acted on behalf of the state prosecutor's office at the proceeding. Attorney Michael Olsen represented the defendant at the sentencing hearing.

Pronouncing judgment in the third degree criminal information, the court sentenced Madill to four indeterminate 0-5-year terms in the Utah State Prison, imposed a $975 fine amount plus applicable interest and instructed the defendant to satisfy an additional $250 in restitution stemming from the felony level complaint to the Carbon County Sheriff's Office.

The district judge subsequently stayed the execution of all four indeterminate 0-5-year prison terms, sentenced Madill to 120 days in the Carbon County Jail and placed the defendant on probation under the direction of the Utah Department of Corrections for 36 months.

As conditions for formal supervision, the court ordered Madill to undergo an appropriate mental health evaluation, comply with all treatment recommendations, cover all therapy costs and refrain from consuming alcohol as well as illicit controlled substances.

In addition, the district judge directed the former county drug court tracker to abide by all daily curfew restrictions established by state corrections officers, avoid associating with any individuals consuming alcohol as well as illicit controlled substances and violate no law throughout the three-year formal probationary period.

In conclusion, the court instructed Madill to voluntarily report to the county sheriff's office by 5 p.m. on May 25 to commence serving the designated 120-day jail sentence and ordered the defendant to complete 40 hours of community service in connection with the third degree felony level criminal case.

On March 24, Madill appeared before Judge Anderson to answer a formal felony level complaint containing six separate third degree counts, one custodial sexual relations charge and five tampering with evidence offenses.

Pursuant to a negotiated disposition agreement, Madill waived the right to a previously scheduled preliminary hearing before the defendant entered guilty pleas at felony arraignment on the third degree custodial relations count and four third degree tampering with evidence charges.

After accepting the Price resident's guilty pleas, the court referred Madill to the department of corrections for a presentence investigation and scheduled pronouncement of judgment in the defendant's third degree felony level convictions on May 13.

In exchange for the entrance of the four guilty pleas, the court granted a joint prosecution-defense motion and dismissed the two remaining third degree tampering with evidence counts contained in the criminal case filed against Madill.

Dated Feb. 2, the formal criminal complaint accused the former drug court tracker of committing six of the third degree felony offenses from November 2008 through January 2009.

Count one contended that the defendant, while employed as a county correctional or law enforcement officer, purportedly engaged in unlawful sexual intercourse with an individual in official custody. The complaint identified the drug court participant in question as a probationer or a person under correctional supervision.

Counts two through six contended that the Price resident knowingly or intentionally altered, concealed or removed evidence collected as a drug court tracker with the purpose of impeding investigations into suspected unlawful activities of program participants.

Madill initially came under scrutiny as a result of information provided by several confidential sources regarding the tracker's alleged criminal activities involving several participants in the local drug court program, indicated Strate during an interview in January.

Defendants charged with felony drug-related crimes apply to participate in the program after appearing before the district court to answer the criminal offenses. The tracker monitors the participants, who must voluntarily submit to random drug testing as part of the program.

The confidential informants claimed that Madill purportedly altered, falsified or delayed the mandatory drug screenings for individuals participating in the county drug court program, according to the county attorney.

Prior to accepting the drug court tracker position, Madill worked as a correctional officer at the county jail. In order to qualify to occupy jailer positions with the sheriff's department, candidates must obtain Utah Police Officers Standards and Training certification.

Carbon County Sheriff James Cordova conducted an administrative review hearing with Madill and, following the January discussion into the allegations, the Price resident resigned the drug court tracker position. Upon completing the administrative stage of the process, the sheriff transferred the case to the county attorney's office and local law enforcement authorities initiated an intensive criminal investigation into the allegations, pointed out Strate.

The cooperative law enforcement effort included representatives from the sheriff's office and the county attorney's criminal investigator, Detective Will Draughon. The detective conducted interviews with confidential informants as well as Madill before arresting and booking the former drug court tracker into the Emery County Jail on Jan. 27 on three third degree felony level counts, one custodial sexual relations charge and two tampering with evidence offenses.

Additional information surfaced during the ongoing investigation into the incident and the county attorney's office later expanded the formal criminal complaint to include five third degree tampering with evidence counts along with the custodial sexual relations charge, concluded Strate in January.

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