Woman pleads guilty to part in 'spice' drug ring
Wednesday, January 11, 2017 12:32 PM
A woman pleaded guilty Wednesday in Allen Superior Court for her part in a local "spice" operation she helped run while she was incarcerated in the Allen County Jail.
Carrie S. Morningstar, of the 2500 block of Weststate Court, pleaded guilty to corrupt business influence, a Level 5 felony, which would call for her to serve a 2 1/2-year prison sentence. In exchange for her guilty plea, if a judge accepts it, additional counts of dealing in a synthetic drug and money laundering, Level 6 felonies, will be dismissed at sentencing.
She also would be ordered to serve time for a probation violation on a misdemeanor, meaning an additional 60 days would be added at sentencing, which is Jan. 31 before Allen Superior Court Judge Fran Gull.
Morningstar admitted she was in the Allen County Jail while she helped run a "spice" operation Sept. 9, 2015 through July 6. As others manufactured and dealt the synthetic drug, they would place the drug money in her bank account.
The drug ring was discovered through phone calls placed to and from Morningstar using code, such as "the French toast is not sugary." All inmates receive individual PINs to make phone calls and all calls are monitored because contents of conversations can be used against them.
A series of phone calls revealed French toast meant "spice."
On June 25, Carrie Morningstar called an accomplice who misspoke about the "spice money." The accomplice then corrected herself, "I mean coming out of the lettuce money," according to a probable-cause affidavit.
On July 6, search warrants were served at three locations, where police found evidence of synthetic drug manufacturing kits, green leafy synthetic drugs, jail letters between the Morningstars and others detailing the manufacturing of synthetic drugs and payments discussed on jail calls.