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Carbon man given state prison term for DUI and drug counts

Published August 03. 2018 02:31PM

A Carbon County man was sentenced to a state prison term on Thursday afternoon after previously pleading guilty to drunken driving and drug charges.

Damian Eidem, 31, of Lehighton, was sentenced by President Judge Roger N. Nanovic II to serve a total of 18 to 60 months in a state correctional institution followed by one year of probation.

He previously pleaded to two counts of driving under the influence of a controlled substance and two counts of possession of a controlled substance — methamphetamine.

Eidem was arrested on the first DUI on May 12, 2017, in the 100 block of Main Lane by Lehighton police. The second DUI occurred on July 22, 2017, along Canal Street in Franklin Township filed by state police at Lehighton. The drug possession counts stem from incidents on July 11 and Aug. 18, 2017, both in Lehighton. In the July 11 incident police found him asleep on a park bench near the post office. Eidem was found with methamphetamine.

At the start of Thursday’s proceeding, Eidem entered a guilty plea to one count of access device fraud. He was charged by Lehighton police for an incident on Oct. 6, 2017. A female resident of the borough reported she let Eidem stay at her home overnight, and the next morning found a credit card missing. Eidem admitted taking the card and making purchases with it. He was originally charged with 12 counts.

Eidem asked for a county prison term to address his addiction problems.

Nanovic noted Eidem had gone through inpatient programs including the Salvation Army but “it didn’t take.” He also noted Eidem’s criminal record dates back to 2004. Eidem admitted using illegal drugs since he was 14.

Nanovic also noted that in a presentence investigation report prepared by the adult probation office, family members are quoted as saying Eidem “cares more about drugs than his children.”

Eidem disputed that allegation, stating he has been trying for some time to get off drugs because of his children.

In addition to the prison term and probation, Eidem was ordered to pay fines totaling $2,500 on the DUI counts and a total of 30 months of license suspensions, get both drug and alcohol and mental health evaluations, pay court costs of about $1,000 and make restitution of $1,081.41 in the credit card case.

Eidem, who has been in the county prison on the charges, was given credit for a total of 154 days.

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