77-day term for neglect death may become 10 years
A LaGrange County woman who served 77 days in prison for the neglect death of a 16-month-old foster child may face serving her full 10-year sentence after being arrested on drug charges, a prosecutor said.
Christy Shaffer, 35, of Topeka, was charged Tuesday with possession of methamphetamine and maintaining a common nuisance, the South Bend Tribune reported. She was being held without bond in the LaGrange County Jail.
LaGrange County Prosecutor Jeff Wible said that a drug test earlier this month showed a small amount of methamphetamine in Shaffer.
A positive drug test alone can lead to probation being revoked, and that's for probation officers to determine, Wible said.
"I'm 100 percent sure that's forthcoming," Wible said.
Shaffer pleaded guilty to neglect of a dependent in February 2011 in connection with the death of 16-month-old Alissa Guernsey, the daughter of a cousin. The toddler died from unexplained injuries in March 2009, a few months after she was placed with Shaffer and her husband by the Indiana Department of Child Services.
Shaffer was sentenced to four years in prison with six years suspended, but Lagrange Circuit Judge J. Scott VanDerbeck later modified the sentence to the 77 days already served, plus six months home detention and three years' probation.
In the latest case that led to Shaffer's arrest Tuesday, prosecutors allege two LaGrange County men charged earlier this month with dealing and possessing meth were making the drug in the garage of Shaffer's home. Police were searching the home of one of the men when Shaffer texted and then called his cellphone, according to court records.
An investigator for the prosecutor's office answered the suspect's phone. Shaffer later admitted to flushing the drug and paraphernalia down a toilet after the call, the investigator wrote in an affidavit. Shaffer also admitted to possessing meth, court documents said.