CHARLESTON -- Issues with evidence were what led to the recent dismissal of two Coles County drug cases, according to the cases' prosecutor.
The cases charged Rhonda S. Antrim with having methamphetamine and Shawn P. Carey with having a medication without the required prescription. Both were dismissed at the prosecution's request.
Antrim, 36, for whom court records list an address of Lot 6 in Lakeland Estates mobile home park at 4808 Paradise Road, Mattoon, was accused of having methamphetamine on Sept. 10 and 25 of 2015.
Attorney Todd Reardon, who represented Antrim, filed a motion that argued that the drugs were discovered because of an illegal search.
The motion claimed a Coles County sheriff's deputy who said he found methamphetamine at Antrim's residence entered without a warrant and without permission.
The deputy later located and questioned Antrim and also found her in possession of more methamphetamine, which led to the second charge, according to the motion.
The motion sought to "suppress" the evidence that resulted, which would have meant that it was obtained illegally and couldn't be used against Antrim.
Assistant State's Attorney Joy Wolf requested that the case be dismissed before a hearing on the motion took place. She said the defense motion was a "big reason" for that request, which Circuit Judge Brien O'Brien granted.
Meanwhile, Carey, 46, whose address on record is 712 Edgar Ave., Mattoon, was accused of having the medication without a prescription on April 17.
Records in his case indicate a police officer found the medication in his possession but Carey said it belonged to someone else and he planned to return it but hadn't done so yet.
Wolf said the person to whom Carey claimed the drug actually belonged could not be located in order to testify had the case gone to trial.
That was the only witness who could contradict Carey's story, leading her to ask that the charge be dismissed, Wolf explained.
O'Brien granted the motion. Public Defender Anthony Ortega represented Carey.
In each of the cases, the suspect faced a charge that could have brought a prison sentence of one to three years with a conviction.