By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Couple get prison in meth case
First offender granted probation
Patricia Nicole Hall mb
Patricia Hall

A man who operated a crude methamphetamine lab inside a mobile home a few feet from where toddlers slept was sentenced to seven years in prison Friday.

Donald Jason Passmore, 30, was sentenced by Hall County Superior Court Judge C. Andrew Fuller to 15 years, with seven to serve in prison and the remainder on probation. He was convicted this week on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine in the presence of children and criminal attempt to traffic in methamphetamine.

Two of Passmore’s co-defendants also were sentenced during Friday’s daylong sentencing hearing.

The mother of Passmore’s three children, Patricia Nicole Hall, 26, was sentenced to three years in prison, with 12 years of probation to follow.

Hall and Passmore’s roommate in the Bald Eagle Trail trailer, 25-year-old Kristi Shawn Gooch, received 15 years of probation, with a year of work release to be served beginning in one year. Gooch, a first offender who is eight months pregnant, will have the work release sentence suspended if she does not violate her probation between now and September 2010.

Fuller also fined each defendant $2,000 and attached a number of conditions to their probation, including mental health evaluations and drug and alcohol treatment.

Fuller told the defendants that their children must be their first consideration in all actions they take in the future, Hall County District Attorney Lee Darragh said.

According to court testimony, on the night of Oct 4, 2007, Hall County drug agents found numerous items inside the trailer that were known meth ingredients. They included camping fuel, rock salt, iodine, lye, muriatic acid, matchbook striker plates, rubbing alcohol and liquefied ephedrine.

Authorities found children’s belongings inside a bedroom that contained two microwaves, a hot plate and several glass jars.

Passmore and Hall’s 2-year-old son and 3-month-old daughter were inside the home at the time of the raid. Gooch’s 2-year-old daughter also was in the home.

A jury convicted all three defendants of manufacturing methamphetamine in the presence of children.

While some meth residue was found on a spoon, no significant amounts of the drug were found in the home. The three defendants were acquitted of trafficking in methamphetamine.

The judge heard from numerous relatives and friends of the defendants Friday. Some 30 people were in court Friday to show their support.

The trial lasted 10 days.