In November, two people came before District Court Judge Rick Schreiner to receive sentences after pleading guilty in felony drug cases.
Justin Cribbs appeared in court, facing the charge of attempted possession of a controlled substance, a class 1 misdemeanor and possession of a controlled substance, a class 4 felony, disturbing the peace, a class 2 misdemeanor, and container violation—prescribed and controlled substance, a class 3 misdemeanor. This case arose from an incident in August where officers from the Fairbury Police Department responded to the report of a fight that occurred between Jody Duke and Justin Cribbs. According to the warrantless arrest affidavit, the officer patted Cribbs down, locating a pill bottle that alleged to contain Xanax. The pills in the container were later identified as three different schedule 4 drugs and additional prescription drugs. Cribbs received treatment from an EMT at the scene. The EMT noted that when they attempted to help Cribbs onto a gurney, Cribbs became angry and aggressive. The officer and the EMT prevented Cribbs from leaving the scene.
In the report, the officer stated he observed Cribbs carrying a backpack. The officer searched the bag and located a screwdriver and four syringes, one contained an unidentified liquid. After Cribbs received medical clearance, they conducted another search of Cribbs and found a clear plastic baggie in his knee brace that contained a white, powdery residue that tested positive for methamphetamine. He was transported to the Jefferson County Jail where he was booked on felony drug charges.
In court, Jefferson County Attorney Jeffrey Goltz shared his concerns about Cribbs, noting that there is a need for Cribbs to receive treatment.
“He’s been in county court a fair number of times,” said Goltz. “It’s my belief that Mr. Cribbs is in desperate need of treatment. I’m not sure if he will succeed at it, but if he wants to try, I would encourage that. If there’s anyone I’ve seen here in the past few years in Jefferson County, I would say that Mr. Cribbs is at the top of the list of being in need of treatment.”
Cribbs appeared remorseful, apologizing for his actions. Judge Schreiner agreed with Goltz’s assessment, and sentenced him to serve 290 days in jail, with credit for 108 days served, followed by 12 months of post-release supervision. He issued a stern warning to Cribbs.
“This is going to happen again,” said Judge Schreiner. “You’ve got nothing going on in your life but drinking and hanging out. The people you hang out with aren’t going to help you stay out of trouble. I know you don’t think probation is going to help but I’m in a position where whatever I do you’re going to end up with some sort of probation. My choices are to either look at you and say ‘you’re not even worth trying, so I’m not going to give you the chance for post-release supervision,’ and cut you loose and try to do nothing, or to sentence you to a term of incarceration.”