A woman facing multiple drug-related offenses after being arrested nearly a year ago at a Cambridge area home where she apparently overdosed on illegal narcotics, entered guilty pleas to the charges this week in the Guernsey County Common Pleas Court.
Denise R. Miller, 35, plead guilty to two counts of aggravated possession of drugs, third-degree felonies, and one count of possession of a fentanyl-related compound, a fifth-degree felony, as part of a negotiated plea agreement with the prosecutor’s office.
Miller is scheduled to be sentenced on May 27 following a presentence investigation by the common pleas court’s adult probation department.
According to online court records, Miller filed a motion seeking an intervention in lieu of conviction on Jan. 20 through her legal counsel, Cambridge attorney Chandra Ontko.
Guernsey County sheriff’s deputies arrested Miller at the 21st Street home on April 13, 2021, after she returned to the home from Southeastern Med where she was taken for treatment following the apparent overdose.
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Deputies and first responders from United Ambulance and the Cambridge Fire Department were dispatched to a camper at the 21st Street home at 7:37 p.m. after a caller reported a woman had overdosed.
On arrival, a deputy entered the camper and found an unresponsive Miller lying on the floor. The first dose of Narcan was administered at 7:41 p.m., followed by a second dose four minutes later.
A female witness told deputies Miller had “taken a shot,” but she didn’t know why type of narcotic was in the shot.
A short time later, the woman gave deputies a substance she located near Miller. The drug field-tested positive for methamphetamine.
Deputies returned to the home at 11:25 p.m. after a caller reported a verbal altercation involving Miller.
During the course of their investigation, deputies reported learning illegal narcotics were concealed inside a vehicle, but Miller declined to give them permission to search it.
A sheriff’s office dog was used to conduct an exterior check of the vehicle and reportedly alerted to the vehicle during the open-air sniff. A probable cause search was conducted and the suspected narcotics were located inside a locked glove box.
Deputies reported finding a digital scale with residue and a purple bag that contained a large amount of a crystalline substance, an unknown white powder, an unknown orange powder, a piece of tin foil with a white powder, a bag with an unknown crystalline substance and 39 pills.
Once back at the sheriff’s, the suspected narcotics were field-tested and the majority tested positive for methamphetamine. The combined weights of the suspected narcotics exceeded 17 1/2 grams, authorities said.
An initial charge of aggravated possession of drugs, a third-degree felony, was filed against Miller in the Cambridge Municipal Court on April 14, 2021. Bond was set at $10,000 with no 10% allowed.
The case was bound over to the common pleas court on April 23 following a preliminary hearing. She was indicted by a grand jury on the felony charges on June 15.
The $10,000 bond was modified on July 8 to a personal recognizance bond including a special condition that Miller not be in Guernsey County except to attend court hearings, meet with legal counsel, see her children or meet with a doctor for prenatal care.
On Sept. 22, Miller filed a pro se letter seeking to have Ontko dismissed as her legal counsel and new counsel be appointed. The request was later denied by the court.
The sentencing hearing on May 27 is scheduled for 1 p.m.