Pound of meth leads to drug sale charges for Penn Valley woman | TheUnion.com

Pound of meth leads to drug sale charges for Penn Valley woman

Dawn Theresa Lee

A Penn Valley woman whose federal probation on drug sale charges was set to expire Thursday was arrested that day after detectives say they found a pound of methamphetamine and an ounce of heroin in her possession.

Dawn Theresa Lee, 47, was pulled over by members of the Nevada County Sheriff’s Special Investigations Unit on French Avenue and Jenkins Street in downtown Grass Valley as part of the execution of a search warrant.

Detectives located a half-pound of suspected meth and an ounce of heroin in a Party City paper bag, as well as packaging materials and drug scales, in the vehicle, sheriff’s Sgt. John Dzioba said.

Lee was arrested at the scene and charged with possessing a controlled substance for sale and transportation of a controlled substance, reports state.

Detectives then searched Lee’s residence on Bar Hill Road, off Penn Valley Drive, finding another half-pound of meth, Dzioba said.

“We also located indicia of drug sales, including hundreds of small plastic bags, scales and cutting agents,” he said.

Dzioba estimated the street value of the heroin at about $800. A pound of meth could sell for about $4,800 on the low end if sold by the ounce, up to $10,000 if sold in eighths or smaller quantities.

“It was a decent seizure,” he said.


Lee’s federal conviction stemmed from arrests in 2013 in Nevada County, court records state.

Lee — who had a number of prior criminal cases involving theft, forgery and drugs — was arrested in June 2013 on charges of petty theft, being under the influence of a controlled substance, possessing stolen property, possessing an ingestion device and resisting arrest, reports state.

In August of that year, narcotics detectives searched her residence and reportedly found about 22 grams of meth packaged for sale in eight-ball increments, a scale, packaging material, a meth pipe and $700 in cash.

In another search conducted that November, detectives located 116 grams of suspected meth, packaging materials and $1,200 in cash, court records state. According to a criminal complaint filed in federal court, Lee admitted to obtaining meth on a regular basis for distribution.

Lee pleaded guilty in federal court to possessing methamphetamine with intent to distribute and was sentenced to three years in prison. She entered drug court in 2017 and successfully completed the reentry court program in March 2018, according to court records. Her term of supervised release was reduced by one year at that time, to end Jan. 2, 2020.

Lee remained in custody Friday in the Nevada County Jail on $35,000 bond, reports state.

To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, email lizk@theunion.com or call 530-477-4236.

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