Two receive prison sentences after drugs, gun found during traffic stop in Craven County

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Tito Delwanta Washington and Jessica Marie Leary (Craven County Sheriff’s Office photos)

NEW BERN, N.C. — Two people from Craven County have pled guilty to drug and weapon charges.

District Attorney Scott Thomas announced that Tito Delwanta Washington, 43, of Bridgeton, and Jessica Marie Leary, 35, of Vanceboro, each pled guilty in Craven County Superior Court to charges of Possession With Intent to Sell or Deliver Cocaine and Possession of a Firearm by a Felon stemming from a traffic stop by the Craven County Sheriff’s Office earlier this year.

Washington was sentenced as a Habitual Felon to a minimum of 66 months and maximum of 92 months in prison. Leary received a prison sentence of up to 21 months.

The charges were filed following a traffic stop by the Craven County Sheriff’s Office on a vehicle driven by Washington while displaying a fictitious tag. Upon pulling the vehicle over, Leary was found to be in the passenger seat sliding down into the seat as if hiding something in her pants. After initially denying deputies consent to search the vehicle, Washington admitted to having narcotics inside the vehicle after deputies requested a canine to perform a narcotics sniff of the vehicle.

A search of the vehicle resulted in the recovery of crack cocaine in a pull-out tray to the left of the steering wheel, a .32 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver in the armrest, two digital scales with white powder residue, an open box of sandwich bags and bag corners consistent with use in the packaging of cocaine for sale, and an additional sandwich bag containing cocaine. An additional amount of crack cocaine was located in Leary’s purse.

Superior Court Judge Thomas R. Wilson sentenced each defendant. The cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Chekesha N. Hukins

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