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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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11/19/2013 3:15:00 PM
Verde heroin dealer gets 3.5 years in prison
Harold Eugene Leffel
Harold Eugene Leffel

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter

CAMP VERDE -- A Cottonwood man has been sentenced to prison for attempting to sell heroin in the Verde Valley. Harold Eugene Leffel was indicted in mid-October and Tuesday accepted a plea and will be transferred to prison.

Leffel, 56, had been indicted on 13 counts of narcotic, marijuana and paraphernalia violations. He agreed to a plea charging him with two felonies for attempting to sell heroin to a confidential informant and two counts of paraphernalia possession, during September and October.

Judge Jennifer Campbell sentenced Lefell to 3.5 years for each of the attempting to sell counts and one year for each of the paraphernalia possession counts. Since all charges will run concurrently, his prison term will extend for 3.5 years. Leffel will receive credit for 42 days in the county jail.

MATForce, the Yavapai County Substance Abuse Coalition has been worried about the growing popularity of heroine, an opiate drug that has become more common with the crackdown on prescription pain reliever abuse.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, November 23, 2013
Article comment by: Tim voter

bunch of bleeding hearts, That women receaved what she created. no one forced the loser to steal she received what she deserved, what she created, now she will have plenty of time to both sober up and think about what a loser she has become. hopefully her kids will learn as well and not go down the same road that the mother had built all by herself.......oh yes justic system is as corrupt as u can imagen that is no lie also fuck off cops most of you are as bad as most crooks....

Posted: Saturday, November 23, 2013
Article comment by: Wacka Wacka

I wonder when this country is going to start addressing this as a public health issue and not just law enforcement.

Posted: Friday, November 22, 2013
Article comment by: Mary Jane

You cannot equate what this guy did with what the drug addicted mom did. She was robbing old people's credit cards and business owners after being warned and put on probation for exactly the same crime.

He was trying to cover the costs of his addiction by playing middle man for someone else he thought to be a fellow addict. Heroin is a drug that has to be sought out. It is its own sub-culture and world. Imagine the lengths an alcoholic would go to for a fix if alcohol was illegal. Now multiply that by a factor of 10. For the cops, arresting guys like this is like shooting fish in a barrel.

Drug addiction should not be a law enforcement issue, but rather a health issue. Prohibition does NOT work, it will NEVER work and does more harm to society than the drugs themselves.

What will it take for Americans to understand that the solution is relatively inexpensive and does not include law enforcement that corrupts itself and every aspect of society that it touches? I, for one, am tired of the police being forced (some more willingly than others) to violate citizens' civil rights and taking on the persona of a military squad, thereby eliciting the resentment of everyone whose lives are affected by their abhorrent behavior.

We need to END PROHIBITION and use some of the 100's of billions of dollars saved every year to reopen the mental hospitals and empty out our jails and prisons.

As far as what to do with all the jails, prisons, court houses, cops, DEA, border patrol, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, probation & parole officers and all the buildings and cars and support staff that rely on this corrupting system?

Well, surely some of them can transition into a field of endeavor that ameliorates some of the damage that's been done to society over the last 40+ yrs of this failed experiment.

Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013
Article comment by: Cottonwood Citizen

I agree with AZ girl on the justice system does not work. My daughter is not a mommy. She too was a drug addict. But, she received 6 flat time for drug sales. She has 2 felonies. NOT 13 and then plead them down. 2. That was it. Judge Hancock. Gave her 6 years. So let me tell you if you the justice system in Yavapai County needs to be fixed. And yes, he will be able to get drugs in DOC easier than he could on the streets. DOC can not get a handle on their drug problem.

Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013
Article comment by: AZ Girl

Ok, Maybe I came across as too bleeding heart here. I know mommy addict got time for theft, not addiction and I know more than you think about what her children have gone through as I have known her kids for years (not her). However, I also think that this shows a serious imbalance in our justice system. I dont think that addiction mom should have been let off because shes an addict or because shes a mom, however I do think that there should be a better way. I know exactly what addictions do to children and families and I know what incarcerated mothers do to families as well. I also know that if you dont have either lots of money or no money at all, you are not getting rehab or mental health services. Period. And while no one jumped on her or anyone else and forced heroin into thier bodies, I do think that the guy who is making his $$ selling hard drugs is a bigger threat to our community than she is. Ive seen what hard drugs do to people and I can almost guarantee that he has taken many many $$ in stolen cash and goods.

Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013
Article comment by: FACTS not Fairytales please!

She wasn't a heroin addicted mother. She was prescribed drugs by a doctor, prescription drugs for pain, for a real ailment. When she became addicted, she sought help and treatment was not available to her. If she was rich, she would be in rehab, not prison.

Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013
Article comment by: Louis Blankenship

Justice is most favorable to those with means for better defense. America's prisons are crowded with societies misanthropes convicted of smaller quantity drug offenses. The occasional politician and/or entertainer convicted of Class I possession of narcotics in similar quantities often serves zero jail time. Justice often is not blind.

Verde Independent please spell check your articles more closely: "..the growing popularity of heroine, an opiate drug." Thank you for posting my comments.

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: Get real Az girl

What situation do you imagine occurred for the heroin addicted mother? She was walking along and someone like the mr. Leffell jumped her and force fed her the drug?
No she made a conscious choice. But, I do agree we need to decriminalize non-violent drug offenses. Instead of jail time we offer drug rehabilitation and mental health counseling.

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: Just what this man needs!

I agree, AZGirl! The mom who gets hooked on drugs from scumbags like this and forges checks to pay him gets 13 yrs in prison, while this guy will be out in 1-2 yrs. It will be just long enough to get his free dental work done and free medical care, he can join the free weight lifting club in prison so he'll come out buff. And he'll be able to even get free haircut, too!

Women and children are not worth much in the state of AZ.

The United States has more people in prison than any other country, even more than China. And to think we consider our country land of the free....we are the laughing stock of the world. Almost 40% percent of people in prison are there for non-violent offenses. Crime prevention and early intervention of at risk children is what needs to be done. But instead, our tax dollars support private prisons so they can make $$$. ACA , a private prison system, made a record $1.6 billion dollars profit off our tax money last year to incarcerate people. And ACA get guaranteed $$$ from the US Government even if their beds are empty.

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: Re: AZ Girl

Yay! The truth is mommy gets 13.5 years for being a thief NOT for being an addict. I also see where you forgot to mention her amazing child rearing skills and the fact that she was already on probation - seems she already knew the ropes.
You should probably be just as ill from the realization of what she put her children through and how they are probably in a safer place now.
Personally I'm glad they are both off the streets - did the crime, now doing the time.

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: He looks 86 not 56

Look at his picture children, this is what drugs do to you, they make you appear older than you actually are. They make your teeth fall out and wrinkle your skin. Drugs are bad!

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: nobody ever

the judges here are much worse than the people offending. arizona is so screwed up its no wonder stupid stuff like this happens.

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Article comment by: AZ Girl

YAY! The mommy with an addiction problem is going to do 13.5 years, the guy that creates an addiction problem gets 3.5. Thats your justice system at work. Well, he looks like this won't be his first time down-he probably knows the ropes. Hang out and sell his dope inside DOC, take a nice vacay, be out and selling dope on the streets again in no time. I actually feel physically ill from this.

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