BLOOMINGTON — A Missouri woman who admitted to having a handgun concealed in her body during her booking after an arrest was sentenced Tuesday to two years in prison on Tuesday.
Anika Witt, 20, of Ozark was stopped Sept. 7 when police said she was speeding on Interstate 55 near Chenoa. A search of the vehicle turned up heroin, concealed in her bra, and ecstasy, according to court documents. While she was being booked into McLean County jail in Bloomington, a female correctional officer found a loaded Kimber .380-caliber handgun inside Witt’s vaginal cavity, prosecutors said.
Witt originally was charged with two counts of armed violence, manufacture and delivery of heroin, possession of heroin, possession of ecstasy and unlawful use of weapons by a felon. All of the charges were dropped except the possession of heroin and unlawful use of weapons charges.
On Tuesday, Judge Casey Costigan accepted a negotiated plea agreement in which Witt agreed to the two-year sentence for the gun charge and a 24-month conditional discharge for the drug charge. A conditional discharge is the lowest level of punishment available.
She also may face charges in Missouri where she is on parole for various charges, including tampering with a motor vehicle and endangering the welfare of a child.
She will receive credit here for time served (250 days) and will get day-for-day credit for her prison time.
“We feel it is fair and just and are pleased with the outcome,” said defense attorney Brian McEldowney.
She faced a sentence range of probation to four to 15 years on the heroin charge and two to 10 years on the weapons charge. She also must pay a fine of $6,400 for the drugs' street value, which must be paid within two years of her release from custody.
Still, Costigan warned her that she may face additional penalties from her pending charges in Missouri.
“They may have different rules and I can’t order a judge to do something there,” he said. “A judge may order you to serve a consecutive sentence after this one is completed.”
Assistant State’s Attorney Jeff Horve said that Witt has not had any issues since her arrest.
“She has been cooperative with police and authorities and this is what we believe is fair,” he said.
The weapon, Costigan said, must also be forfeited.
Another passenger in the vehicle, Clinton McDonald, 29, of Springfield, Mo., was accused of possessing about 60 grams of heroin, and his case was brought to trial earlier this month. After the start of the trial, he agreed to a sentence of 24 months of conditional discharge.
He also was sentenced to 180 days in jail but was released because he had already served 244 days by the time he had accepted the deal.