Drug Case Continued For Health Issues
A McConnellsburg man accused of selling prescription pain killers was granted another continuance Tuesday based on ongoing health issues.
Defense attorney Philip Harper told Court of Common Pleas Judge Douglas Herman that his client, Timothy Lee Spriggs, continues to have a serious medical problem. Spriggs underwent a total knee replacement on June 4, Harper said, and is currently on high doses of pain medication and will require several months of rehabilitation.
Spriggs, who has a 45 Hillsides Estate residence, was arrested on December 16, 2011, by an undercover officer with the Pennsylvania State Police. In the case, Spriggs was charged with one count each of delivery and possession of a controlled substance. The allegations stem from a transaction with a confidential informant involving 20 Hydrocodone tablets.
Fulton County District Attorney Travis Kendall responded he was concerned about Spriggs being in the community. Kendall stated it is likely Spriggs has a preexisting drug problem and now finds himself using pain killers to aid in his recovery process. He added he did not doubt what the defendant’s physician outlined regarding his current condition.
It was noted in court that Spriggs’ physician will be weaning him off the pain killers, and there wouldn’t be any risk of him selling his prescription pills to others.
“The closer wraps we have him under the better ... ,” added Kendall.
Judge Herman suggested in the event sentencing would be delayed until a later date, Spriggs could be placed under the supervision of the Probation Department. It was further noted supervision would not prohibit the defendant from doctor’s appointments and rehab.
“I’m not negotiating with you,” the judge told Spriggs. “This is what it’s going to be or I’m sentencing you today. ... Medical care at a state correctional institution would be adequate to treat this problem. It would not be life threatening if sentencing was today.”
Herman agreed to postpone sentencing until September 11. Until that time Spriggs will remain under supervision of the Probation Department. He will be subject to random drug testing for substances other than what have been prescribed by a doctor. Furthermore, he will be unable to travel outside the confines of the McConnellsburg Borough aside from doctor’s appointments, rehabilitation and visiting his children in neighboring Huntingdon County. All trips must be reported in advance to probation.