Judge to Cook Township drug suspect: Get new friends
A Cook Township woman who was accused of carrying three stamp bags of heroin into the Westmoreland County Courthouse got a lecture at her arraignment on Thursday and bond set at $50,000.
Jennifer Gimigliano, 37, was in the county probation office about 9:30 a.m. Thursday when probation officers found the stamp bags in her left sock, said county park police, who handle building security.
Greensburg District Judge James Albert, who arraigned Gimigliano on a drug possession charge, told her he typically imposes high bond for people charged with heroin offenses.
“And to make the matter worse, it's in the courthouse,” Albert added. “It's bad enough, but because it's brought into the courthouse, it compounds the situation.”
“I understand, judge,” Gimigliano replied.
Gimigliano, who is unemployed, said she began taking Suboxone, a drug used to treat narcotic addition, about a week ago at a treatment facility.
“I know, if given a chance, I can succeed at it,” Gimigliano said.
“I hope so,” Albert replied
He said he believes many people can kick their drug problems, but only if they change their behavior when they are released from a treatment facility.
Too often, he has seen people go back to their old ways, the judge said.
“Get new friends,” Albert said. “Otherwise, you'll be back to see me again. I'm just speaking from experience.”
In October, Gimigliano pleaded guilty in county court to possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia, according to court records. She was sentenced to one year on probation, with drug and alcohol treatment as a condition.
In 2010, she pleaded guilty to a drug possession charge in Allegheny County court and was put on probation for six months, records show.
Gimigliano, who did not post bond, has a preliminary hearing scheduled for Thursday before Albert.
Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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