Female ‘friend’ was drug informant

SUBLETTE COUNTY – A man was just trying to help a “friend” last November when he went to Colorado and brought back an ounce of pot – but the woman was a confidential informant for the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office.

Thursday, Phillip A. Lewis, Jr., pleaded guilty in 9th District Court via teleconference to one felony count of delivery of a controlled substance, marijuana/THC.

Earlier on July 22, Lewis had pleaded not guilty and requested a jury trial. He was released on $5,000 cash bond and followed release conditions, according to his public defender Rachel Weksler.

Weksler, Lewis and Sublette County Deputy Attorney Clay Melinkovich reached a plea agreement to recommend deferred prosecution, with the charge to be dropped after Lewis successfully completes three years of supervised probation.

Lewis entered the guilty plea and Judge Marv Tyler asked him to lay the factual foundation for his plea to delivery of marijuana.

“I was hanging out and this person came up to me and asked if I would go to Colorado (to buy an ounce of pot),” Lewis said. “She said she didn’t have a reliable source, so I agreed. … I thought this person was a friend and I didn’t think it was a big deal at the time but now I’m coming to realize it is.”

Judge Tyler accepted the agreement, noting his lack of prior criminal history, and ordered Lewis to report for probation and pay $1,300 in court fees. Part of that is $350 restitution to the sheriff’s office for “buy funds” the confidential informant paid him for the marijuana.