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Drug court participant gets prison term

FARMINGTON — Another former St. Francois County drug court participant was sentenced to time in prison.

On Friday, Circuit Court Judge Kenneth W. Pratte sentenced Justin Burns, 19, of Farmington to seven years in prison for felony possession of marijuana and misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia.

Burns was kicked out of the program this month after breaking drug court rules and lying about being employed. He had been in the program since April of 2007.

In other cases, Dennis C. Marler, 19, of Leadwood, was sentenced to seven years in prison for violating the probation he received for institutional vandalism. The judge will release Marler on a new term of supervised probation if he successfully completes a 120-day drug treatment program.

According to court records, Marler caused damage to the First Church of God by breaking the church’s windows in December of 2006, causing at least $5,000 worth of damage. During the plea hearing, Marler said he went to a party, got drunk but does remember breaking windows in the church.

Jeremy W. Bailey, 29, of Potosi, was sentenced to four years in prison for possession of a chemical with intent to make meth. The sentence will run concurrent to the sentence he is currently serving.

Charles E. Drake, 36, of Desloge, was sentenced to seven years in prison for two counts of driving while intoxicated.

Jeffrey C. Asher pleaded guilty to second-degree assault-vehicular. He will be sentenced at a later date.

Placed on five years of supervised probation were William W. Barger, 25, of Park Hills, for failure to pay child support; Michael K. Barnhouse, 27, of Ironton, for possession of a controlled substance; Dennis Goodson, 20, of Potosi, for unlawful use of a weapon; and Matthew Halbert, 27, of Sikeston, for two counts of second-degree assault.

Teresa Ressel is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-431-2010, ext. 179 or at

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