A judge Tuesday opted to sentence a Craig woman charged with meth possession to four years of probation rather than Correctional Alternative Placement Services.
Craig Police arrested Jessey Stiegelmeyer, 24, of Craig, in November on meth possession charges.
Stiegelmeyer appeared in 14th Judicial District Court on Tuesday for a sentencing hearing.
Prosecutors asked Chief Judge Michael O'Hara to sentence Stiegelmeyer to 18 months in CAPS.
A tearful Stiegelmeyer asked the judge to give her probation so she could care for her grandfather.
"I'm not a criminal," Stiegelmeyer said. "I don't want to live the life that I've lived in the past."
After being released from Moffat County Jail on bail in January, Stiegelmeyer started a support group for other meth addicts.
While handing down his sentence, O'Hara told Stiegelmeyer that she was, by definition, a criminal.
"I understand you don't like the label of being a criminal. But a criminal is, in fact, a person who commits a crime," O'Hara said.
O'Hara granted Stiegelmeyer's request, sentencing her to four years of probation.
He called his decision a "final opportunity."
"There is no question that there is a significant risk in placing you on probation," O'Hara said.
But the justice system should try to help people who are amenable, he said.