Heroin is considered one of the most, if not the most, addictive illegal substances plaguing America. It is the apparent drug of choice for those involved in the use of illegal substances in Carbon County according to statistics.

Yesterday in the county court a Nesquehoning woman said she has spent an inheritance she received, totaling $100,000, on heroin over an eight month period.

Gina Marie Raczkowski, 21, made the admission to President Judge Roger N. Nanovic II when entering a guilty pleas to one count each of theft and receiving stolen property.

Raczkowski was charged by Jim Thorpe police on Dec. 5, 2008, with taking seven checks belonging to her mother, Jean Raczkowski, and forging the victim's name. She cashed the seven checks for a total of $1,900. She told Nanovic that the money was also used to purchase heroin.

Since her arrest Raczkowski said she entered an inpatient drug rehabilitation program for four months and is currently enrolled in a outpatient counseling program. She told Nanovic that she currently has her drug addiction under control and is living back with her mother.

She said she became addicted to the drug about two years ago.

Raczkowski was previously placed in the county's Accelerated Rehabilitation Disposition (ARD) probation program for first time offenders but was revoked.

Nanovic accepted the plea and placed her on probation for 18 months. He also ordered Raczkowski to get a drug and alcohol (D&A) evaluation, but added the report from her rehab stay would be sufficient, must continue her counseling, zero tolerance imposed on drug and alcohol use, and make restitution of $1,400 to her mother. She has already repaid $500 of the total taken from her mother.

Other pleas

Other defendants who entered guilty pleas to drug-related charges included:

Daniel W. Claypoole, 32, of Jim Thorpe, was sentenced to a county prison term after pleading guilty to two counts of possession of a controlled substance and one count of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and a controlled substance.

Claypoole was arrested on Dec. 20, 2010, at his residence after agents of the state Attorney General's office served a search warrant. Found in the home was various drugs and drug paraphernalia. The DUI arrest occurred on July 27, 2010, along SR903 in Jim Thorpe. He was also charged with a possession count at the stop as police found marijuana and drug paraphernalia on him in and in the vehicle.

Defense Atty. Stephen Vlossak Sr. told the court Claypool sustained a serious back injury in a auto accident about 10 years ago and continues to suffer from pain. He said he started using drugs to help with the pain.

On the drug count stemming from the DUI stop Nanovic sentenced him to serve six to 12 months in prison. On the DUI charge he was sentenced to serve 10 days to six months in jail, with the terms running concurrently.

On the second possession count he was sentenced to serve two to four months in jail with that term running consecutive to the other charges.

Nanovic also ordered Claypool to get a D&A evaluation, pay a fine of $500 on the DUI charge, license suspended for a year, zero tolerance imposed on D&A use, and render 15 hours of community service when out on parole.

He will begin the jail term on Friday, June 1, at 9 a.m.

Jonathan Scott Wagstaff, 31, of Summit Hill, pleaded to one count each of possession of a controlled substance-heroin and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was arrested on May 21, 2010, by agents of the AG office in the 100 block of Broadway, Jim Thorpe. He was arrested when a confidential informant (CI) made a control buy involving Wagstaff.

Since his arrest Wagstaff entered a Christian-based drug rehabilitation program in New Jersey and was so successful in it that he stayed on for another eight months assisting counselors with other patients.

On the possession count Nanovic sentenced him to time served (116 days) to one year in jail and he was immediately paroled. On the paraphernalia charge he was placed on probation for six months, consecutive to the first count. He was also ordered to get a D&A evaluation but the report from the facility where he is currently at will be sufficient, Nanovic said.

Michael Richardson, 18, of Lehighton, pleaded to one count of possession of a controlled substance-marijuana. He was arrested on March 14 by Lehighton police along Center Alley. Police were at a residence to serve a warrant on Richardson and during a patdown search marijuana was found on him.

Nanovic placed him on probation for a year and ordered he get a D&A evaluation and imposed zero tolerance on D&A use.

Steven Barclay, 20, of Palmerton, pleaded to one count of possession of a small amount of marijuana. He was arrested on Jan. 10 along SR248 by state police at Lehighton after being stopped for speeding. Found in his possession was marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

Nanovic imposed a fine of $250.

Each defendant must also pay court costs and a $50 per month supervision fee while on probation or parole.