Drug dealer to judge: ‘I don’t want to die in prison’
NEWARK – As Robin Kasper awaited her sentence from Judge Thomas Marcelain, she clasped her hands as if in prayer.
“I wish I wouldn’t have done it,” she said. “I just don’t want to die in prison.”
Kasper, 50, entered guilty pleas to first-degree felony counts of aggravated possession of drugs and aggravated trafficking in drugs, as well as a fifth-degree felony count of possession of criminal tools.
Assistant Licking County Prosecutor Paula Sawyers said Kasper was stopped while driving on Interstate 70 on Jan. 11. When her vehicle was searched, a can with a false bottom was found.
In that can was 223 grams of methamphetamine, Sawyers said.
Kasper’s attorney, Stephen Wolfe, said his client had been homeless and was offered a chance to make some money by transporting methamphetamine. He said she was not aware of the amount of drugs.
“She’s not saying what she did was right, she just didn’t know how wrong it was,” Wolfe said.
He said Kasper believed there was about one-tenth of the amount of drugs that there actually were.
“I’d never seen that much before,” Kasper said. “I didn’t know there was that much.”
Kasper said she did not want to die in prison and hoped Marcelain would take mercy on her.
Marcelain said he knew it wasn’t Kasper’s first time trafficking drugs and said she likely didn’t ask many questions about the amount she was given.
Kasper has convictions for trafficking in drugs from 1990 and 2014. She also has a pending case out of Monroe County.
Marcelain told Kasper he believed the amount of drugs was one of the largest he had ever seen. He referenced a case he heard last week, in which another woman was charged with multiple first-degree felony drug offenses.
That woman had possessed 50 or 60 grams of methamphetamine on multiple occasions.
“Half that amount (223 grams) would have been a first-degree felony offense, if not a third,” Marcelain said.
He ordered Kasper to serve seven years in prison. The sentence is mandatory, meaning Kasper is not eligible to apply for judicial release.
As part of her sentence, Kasper was ordered to forfeit $443 and the vehicle she was driving.