A Northampton County woman admitted bringing heroin into a Weatherly school where she was working as a teacher's aide. She was one of several defendants in pending criminal cases to enter a guilty plea Tuesday in Carbon County court before Judge Steven R. Serfass.

Jessica M. McKeegan, 26, of Nazareth, pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia. In exchange for the plea, the district attorney's office dropped a count of possession of a controlled substance and eight other paraphernalia counts.

McKeegan was arrested on May 20, 2010, when Weatherly police were called to the school to a report of an aide found with drugs.

The police report indicated McKeegan had heroin in her coat pocket concealed in a compact. Another person bumped into the coat while it was hanging in a closet and the compact fell to the floor, revealing the drugs.

McKeegan admitted to a heroin problem but told Serfass that since the incident, she entered an inpatient rehabilitation program and then went to a halfway house, for a total of 123 days. She said she is still receiving counseling.

Serfass accepted the plea and placed her on probation for a year on each count, running concurrently, giving her credit for the 123 days spent in the rehab program.

She was also ordered to get a drug and alcohol (D&A) evaluation and follow any recommendation for treatment, and zero tolerance imposed on D&A use.

Other pleas

Other defendants who entered pleas included:

Sabwa Blaze Sula, 36, of Slatington, pleaded to one count each of driving under the influence (DUI), resisting arrest, persistent disorderly conduct and simple assault.

He was arrested on Sept. 24 along Catawissa Street in Nesquehoning, following a traffic stop for speeding. He was found to be under the influence. When officers attempted to take him into custody he fought with the officers.

Police had to use force to subdue him. During the incident two police officers suffered injuries and police equipment was damaged.

On the DUI charge Serfass placed Sula, a first offender, on probation for six months and ordered he pay a fine of $300 and get a D&A evaluation.

On the simple assault charge he was sentenced to time served (25 days in jail) to 18 months. On the conduct and resisting counts he was placed on probation for a year on each. All the terms run consecutive to each other.

Serfass also ordered he make restitution of $180 for damaged police equipment and render 25 hours of community service.

John R. Ferrey, 56, of Freeland, pleaded to one count of DUI. He was arrested on June 8 along SR940 by Kidder Township police. He refused a blood test, and lost his license for a year for the refusal.

Serfass sentenced him to serve 72 hours to six months in jail, a fine of $1,000, another one-year license suspension, get a D&A evaluation and render three hours of community service per month while on parole. He was given credit for 17 days spent in an inpatient rehabilitation program and paroled.

William McHose, 25, of Lehighton, pleaded to one count of possession of drug paraphernalia. He was arrested on July 20 at his then residence in Nesquehoning.

Borough police were called to the home along Stock Street for a domestic incident. On scene officers found the paraphernalia.

Serfass placed him on probation for a year.

Joseph Samuel Lakata, 21, of Weatherly, pleaded to one count of DUI. He was arrested on July 19 along Wilbur Street, in Weatherly. Given a test, the result was .10BAC.

Serfass placed him on probation for six months and ordered he get a D&A evaluation, pay a fine of $300 and render three hours of community service per month while on probation.

Joseph John Gogal Jr., 51, of Nesquehoning, pleaded to one count of harassment. He was arrested on July 30 when police responded to his residence to a report of an assault. Gogal was charged with assaulting his boyfriend, Ritchie Cressman, 51, the police report stated.

Serfass placed him on probation for a year and ordered he render 36 hours of community service.

Ritchie Cressman, 51, of Nesquehoning, pleaded to one count of defiant trespass. He was arrested on July 30 by borough police during the incident with Gogal. He had gone to the residence when previously told he was not welcome there, the police report indicates.

Serfass placed him on probation for a year and ordered he render 36 hours of community service.

Jonathan P. Searfoss, 28, of Mountain Top, pleaded to one count of possession of a controlled substance-heroin. He was arrested on Oct. 17 following a vehicle stop at Broad and Tamaqua streets, in Beaver Meadows. Searfoss was a passenger in the vehicle. During a consent search of the vehicle police found 16 baggies of heroin, which Searfoss admitted belonged to him.

Searfoss admitted to a heroin addiction and told the court he was currently receiving outpatient counseling and was attempting to get into an inpatient program.

Serfass placed him on probation for a year and ordered he get a D&A evaluation and zero tolerance imposed on D&A use. The probation runs consecutive to a probation violation sentence Searfoss is currently serving in Luzerne County.

Kevin W. Luther, 43, of Morrisville, N.Y., pleaded to one count of possession of drug paraphernalia. He was arrested on June 26 along the Northeast Extension of the turnpike in Kidder Township by state police at Pocono. During a traffic stop police found Luther in possession of a marijuana pipe.

He was placed on probation for a year.

All defendants must also pay court costs, that average close to $1,000, and a $50 per month supervision fee while on probation or parole.

ARD placement

Timothy J. Kelly, 27, of Springfield, Bucks County, was placed in the county's Accelerated Rehabilitation Disposition (ARD) probation program for first time offenders on a charge of DUI. He was arrested on July 30 along SR903 by Kidder Township police. Given a test, the result was .20BAC.

Serfass placed him for a year and ordered he pay $450 for the cost of the program, get a D&A evaluation, pay all court costs, pay a $50 per month supervision fee while in the program, and his license was suspended for 60 days.

If Kelly successfully completes the program his record will be wiped clean.