Saturday, February 19, 2011

Boyd sentenced to year in prison after violating probation

February 19, 2011 - By DEANNE JOHNSON (Staff Writer)
LISBON - A Wellsville woman on probation for the death of her child in 2005 was sentenced Friday in Common Pleas Court to serve one year in prison after she was found to have violated her probation.
As part of her probation, Renee Boyd, 28, Main Street, had been ordered in 2007 to obey all laws, abstain from using illegal drugs, and abstain from associating with known criminals, including her co-defendant in the death of the child, the baby's father, Alan Jakes Jr. Additionally, she was to maintain employment and alert the probation department of any change of address.
But Cindy Scarabino, assistant chief in the probation department, testified Boyd failed to follow all those terms. Boyd and Jakes were just indicted last month on drug-related charges for their alleged involvement in the sale of crack cocaine and cocaine, as well as possession of cocaine and cash believed gained from drug sales. Boyd has been charged with two counts of trafficking in drugs and one count of possession of drugs. Jakes was indicted on four counts of trafficking in drugs and one count of possession. Scarabino further testified Boyd failed a drug test last April, but had passed all drug tests before and after the April test. She also testified Boyd gave birth to a son in March 2009. Scarabino had questioned Boyd about the identity of the father and, she testified, Boyd finally admitted in December 2009 that it was Jakes' child. On Dec. 13, she married Jakes, which Scarabino said she learned about on Dec. 14 and had also questioned Boyd about.
"She said she was in love with him and had a child with him," Scarabino said. Scarabino further testified Boyd had claimed to be staying on Montana Avenue in East Liverpool, but Jakes testified at a hearing he was living with Boyd on Main Street in Wellsville, an address Boyd had failed to give the court. Scarabino said she also knew Boyd had worked part-time for only a short time at Wendy's and possibly at a Subway.
Boyd's attorney, Richard Hura, noted Boyd had only violated her drug testing one time, which he asked Scarabino if she would call that "an isolated incident." He further said because Boyd and Jakes had a previous child together, in effect the court had ordered her to stay away from the father of her child. Scarabino pointed out that child is currently being raised by Boyd's mother in Florida.
Hura admitted Boyd had a problem in the past, but was successful in beating that problem for four years before the positive drug test, which she had admitted to Scarabino she had "slipped up."
Hura also asked the court to remember Boyd is innocent until proven guilty on the current drug-related charges, which she pleaded not guilty to in January. He asked Judge Scott Washam to wait until the outcome of that trial to make his decision.
Boyd became emotional when Washam requested prosecuting attorney Tim McNicol give him the background on the baby's death. Washam became a Common Pleas Judge in January and the original case was handled by now retired Judge David Tobin.
McNicol relayed how Boyd's daughter, Machaly, then 4 or 5 months old, was found dead in her crib at LaBelle Terrace and the autopsy found the baby died of dehydration and hyperthermia, with negligence leading to the child's death. Drug use was believed to be a factor, he said, with drug paraphernalia found by law enforcement.
Both Boyd and Jakes were convicted of reckless homicide. Jakes, now 29, served a year in prison, while Boyd was sentenced to four years probation in 2007, serving the first six months at the Eastern Ohio Correction Center. Tobin had reportedly warned Boyd at the time that if she violated her probation he would send her to prison for the maximum five years.
"She doesn't get it," McNicol said to Washam. "Send a strong message, you don't thumb your nose at probation."
Through tears, Boyd told Washam, "I don't feel like I should be punished anymore for my daughter's death."
Despite Washam reminding her she had lied to her probation officer, used drugs and had a continuing association with Jakes, Boyd denied she had violated her probation.
"I don't feel I did anything wrong," she said shortly before Washam sentenced her to one year in a state correctional facility.
"I believe Mr. McNicol is right," Washam said. "You just don't get it."

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