No deal in meth case

Judge rejects plea for truck thief


A judge rejected a plea deal Tuesday that would have sent a Craig woman to prison for four years for selling and possessing methamphetamine.

Julie Denee McLeslie, 34, of Craig, goes to trial Monday on meth charges.

McLeslie had a plea hearing in 14th Judicial Court on Tuesday.

McLeslie is facing multiple charges from a meth sweep in December, as well as another meth arrest.

Deputy District Attorney Andy Heyl said the deal would have sent McLeslie to prison for four years followed by five years of parole. McLeslie would have pleaded guilty to selling meth and to possession of more than 1 gram of meth, which are both felonies, Heyl said.

In exchange for the plea, prosecutors would have dropped the rest of the charges against McLeslie, Heyl said.

The prison term would have run consecutive with a one-year term McLeslie is serving for theft.

Chief Judge Michael O'Hara declined to comment Tuesday afternoon about why he rejected the deal.

Heyl said O'Hara's decision means McLeslie's cases will go to trial. The first trial will start Monday, Heyl said.

McLeslie was one of 15 people charged with meth distribution and possession during a major drug sweep in December.

At the time of the sweep, McLeslie was in the Mesa County Jail in Grand Junction on vehicle theft charges.

A Mesa County sheriff's deputy arrested McLeslie in November. Authorities said she was driving a 1991 Ford F-150 that was stolen from Horizons Specialized Services in Craig a few days before.

Horizons serves people with developmental disabilities and mental retardation in Northwest Colorado.

On Feb. 9, McLeslie pleaded guilty in Grand Junction in that case. A judge there sentenced her to one year in jail on the theft charge.

McLeslie was transferred from the Mesa County Jail to the Moffat County Jail in February.

McLeslie typically would be sent to the Colorado Department of Corrections to serve time for the vehicle theft, but she is in Moffat County Jail on $50,000 bail for the three meth cases.

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