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Habitual felon gets 7-to-10 yrs. behind bars

WINDSOR – A local man currently locked up for one drug crime now faces additional time behind bars.

During Monday’s session of Bertie County Superior Court, 39-year-old Antwand Cherry (aka “Mickey Mouse”) of Windsor accepted a guilty plea to possession with intent to sell/deliver cocaine, and to the status of being a habitual felon.

Acting upon Cherry’s guilty plea, Superior Court Judge Quentin T. Sumner handed down an active prison sentence of 89-to-119 months in the North Carolina Department of Corrections.

According to local District Attorney Valerie Asbell, who handled the state’s prosecution of the case, the offense Cherry was charged with occurred on June 10, 2014. At that time, Cherry delivered crack cocaine to an undercover officer working with the Windsor Police Department.

A. Cherry

Cherry was arrested and charged again, this time for trafficking cocaine in Martin County on March 15, 2017.

Asbell said that Cherry is currently serving a 3-4 year sentence in prison for the trafficking cocaine charge in Martin County. Judge Sumner ordered that the sentence Cherry received on Monday in Bertie County shall began at the expiration of the sentence he is currently serving.

“This sentence sends a message to those selling cocaine on the streets that this conduct will not be tolerated in our community,” said Asbell.

“This case was first on the trial list this week in Bertie County Superior Court,” she added. “Once in court on Monday, Mr. Cherry pled guilty and received an active sentence of 7.5 years to 9.9 years to run at the expiration of the four-year sentence he received in Martin County in January of this year.”

Asbell noted that Cherry obtained the status of a habitual felon because he had several prior felony convictions before being charged with this current Bertie County offense.

According to the NC Department of Public Safety, Cherry does have a long criminal history. Prior to his most recent two crimes for which he is currently behind bars, he was arrested for selling Schedule II narcotics on Dec. 8, 2008 (Martin County); possession with intent to sell Schedule II on Feb. 3, 2010 (Bertie County); possession of a controlled substance on July 18, 2002 (Greene County); breaking and entering and larceny on Feb. 1, 2001 (Martin County); possession with intent to sell Schedule II on Jan. 30, 1996 (Bertie County); and breaking and entering motor vehicles on June 23, 1998 (Bertie County). All of those charges are felonies and he served a combined four years and three months in jail for those crimes.

He also has previous misdemeanor arrests, to include four counts of larceny on four different dates in October, 2008 in Bertie County; communicating threats, wanton injury to personal property and resisting an officer (Bertie County; July 25 and 28, 2008); violating a protective order (Bertie County; Oct. 18, 2006); and simple assault (Bertie County; Sept. 22, 1998).

“It has always been a priority in my office to prosecute drug dealers and habitual felons and this is no exception,” Asbell stressed. “My office and law enforcement have continued to focus our efforts on incarcerating those people who are selling crack cocaine and opiates to the citizens in our community by asking for lengthy active sentences for these drug dealers.  If we don’t get these drug dealers who sell drugs out of our community, we are going to lose our community.

“I want to thank Assistant District Attorney Lisa Coltrain for her hard work on preparing this case for trial.  I also want to thank Victim Legal Assistant Kalen Smallwood for her diligence in making sure all the witnesses were ready to go for the trial,” Asbell concluded.

Cherry was represented by Attorney Assata Buffaloe of Ahoskie.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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