Vermont man admits to smuggling drugs into Hampshire jail

@ecutts_HG
Published: 5/30/2018 12:07:11 AM

NORTHAMPTON — A Vermont man whose brother and mother admitted to smuggling drugs into the Hampshire County Jail and House of Correction was sentenced to a year in jail Tuesday for his involvement.

Corey LaPlaca, 36, of Wilder, Vermont, pleaded guilty in Hampshire Superior Court to conspiracy to violate the controlled substance laws and possession of a drug with intent to deliver to a prisoner or prisoners. A charge of conspiracy was dropped as part of the plea deal. Judge John Agostini sentenced him to one year in jail with credit for 120 days he already served.

LaPlaca’s mother, Helen, and brother, Kevin, pleaded guilty in January to charges connected to the incident. A fourth person, Kevin LaPlaca’s then-girlfriend Jamie L. Smith, 37, of Wilder, Vermont, was also charged and pleaded not guilty to possession of heroin with intent to distribute, conspiracy, conspiracy to violate the controlled substance laws and distribution of oxycodone.

The incidents occurred between Feb. 16 and March 13, 2017. Using recorded jail calls, police learned that Kevin LaPlaca, 34, with the help of his mother, Helen LaPlaca, 58, both of Wilder, Vermont, smuggled nine oxycodone pills into the jail and attempted to smuggle heroin into the facility, Assistant Northwestern District Attorney Jeremy Bucci explained in court. Corey LaPlaca was also given a portion of the oxycodone pills that were brought in, according to Bucci.

A delivery of heroin was expected in March to the brothers by Smith, but when it was not delivered Corey LaPlaca spoke with his mother, using another inmate’s pin number for the phone, and told her he was in trouble because the drugs were not delivered, Bucci said. Smith allegedly returned a few days later with Helen LaPlaca in an attempt to smuggle in the heroin but both were stopped by police.

Corey LaPlaca’s attorney Alfred Chamberland told the judge that LaPlaca was being threatened at the jail by three inmates who were being held under a federal detainer.

Kevin and Corey LaPlaca were both serving six-month sentences in the jail at the time of the alleged incidents.

Kevin LaPlaca pleaded guilty to charges of possession of oxycodone with intent to distribute, conspiracy to violate the controlled substance laws and possession of a drug with intent to deliver to a prisoner or prisoners. He was sentenced to two years in jail and received credit for 182 days already served.

Helen LaPlaca pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the controlled substance laws, conspiracy, possession of heroin with intent to distribute and distribution of oxycodone. Her case was continued without a finding of guilty and she was placed on administrative probation for a year. If she completes her year without running afoul of the law, the charges will be dismissed.

Emily Cutts can be reached at ecutts@gazettenet.com.
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