July 8, 2002

JULY 8, 2002

CONTACT: Charles Dow, Director, Communications And Legislative Affairs 207-626-8577

Attorney General Steven Rowe reported today that Kean M. Ripley, III, age 21, of Stockton Springs was sentenced late last Wednesday for Trafficking in Heroin (Class B) and the Possession of Heroin (Class C). Maine Superior Court Justice Donald Marden sentenced Ripley to serve six years in prison, with all but three years suspended. Once Ripley has served three years in prison, he will be on probation for an additional four years. His conditions of probation require him to completely abstain from the use or possession of alcohol, illegal drugs and firearms, to agree to random drug searches, and to undergo drug counseling. Seven seized firearms were forfeited to the State of Maine.

Ripley pled guilty in June to selling $225 worth of Heroin to an informant on December 17, 2001. The sale was followed by a police search of a home and the seizure of heroin, drug ledgers, packaging materials and seven firearms.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Lara M. Nomani, and was investigated by the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency, with assistance from the Waldo County Sheriff's Office and Maine State Police. In announcing the sentence, Attorney General Steven Rowe stated: "The use of heroin has risen to alarming levels in this State, as is evident from the increase in heroin and other opiate-related overdoses and deaths. This case serves as a reminder that the sale of any amount of heroin will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."