Crime

Man gets 14 years for heroin possession in Madison County

A West Virginia Man caught in Madison County with heroin will serve up to 14 years in prison.

Madison County Associate Judge Neil Schroeder on Wednesday sentenced Carlo L. Ramsey, 49, to 14 years in prison Wednesday.

Ramsey was stopped on Interstate 70 in Madison County on March 13, 2014, and found to have 49.4 grams of heroin, an unloaded firearm and other drugs in his possession. He was charged with two counts of possession of a controlled substance, one count of possession with intent to deliver, and one count of controlled substance trafficking, which would have been a class X enhanced felony punishable by up to 60 years.

Last month Ramsey pleaded guilty to possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, a Class X felony normally punishable by up to 30 years in prison. In exchange for the plea, the other charges were dropped and prosecutors agreed to a sentencing cap of 14 years.

Before sentencing, Ramsey asked for leniency. Speaking in a quiet tone, he said he accepted full responsibility for his actions. “I know it was wrong, what I did, and I apologize,” he said.

Defense attorney Judy Steele argued that while the drug charges were serious, Ramsey did not hurt anyone in his criminal actions. While he has a lengthy criminal history, she said, many of his charges were dismissed or he was acquitted.

“A lot of (Ramsey’s) charges stem from substance abuse... he’s been struggling with addiction all his life,” Steele said. She said Ramsey owned a lawn care business in West Virginia and has children who are coming of age. She requested the minimum sentence of six years, and said Ramsey wanted to address his addiction issue.

Schroeder said while Ramsey didn’t hurt anyone, he did have a number of charges dating back to the 1980s, including armed robbery, smuggling contraband into a prison and breaking and entering. “You have a substantial criminal history that’s been fairly consistent over the years,” he said.

Ramsey remained stoic as the sentence was read, and no family members were present in the courtroom. He will be required to serve at least 50 percent of the sentence, followed by a minimum of three years of probation following release.

Contact reporter Elizabeth Donald at edonald@bnd.com or 618-239-2507.

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