MADISON — A Norfolk man with a criminal history chalked with felonies was sentenced to prison Friday in district court.
Judge Mark Johnson sentenced 44-year-old Shawn Sulley Sr. to 5½ to 10 years in prison on Friday for convictions of delivery of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine and resisting arrest. He was most recently arrested in August and given credit for 67 days served.
The delivery charge arose after Sulley sold about $80 worth of meth during a controlled buy with a confidential informant outside a local business on Jan. 13. A warrant was issued for Sulley’s arrest on July 23 after the drugs involved in the transaction were sent to the state crime lab and returned a positive test.
On. Aug. 17, an officer noticed Sulley inside a Norfolk business, and multiple officers attempted to approach Sulley in the business’ parking lot. Once an officer told Sulley he was under arrest, he fled from the officers on foot.
The officers were able to catch Sulley shortly thereafter, but he continually resisted arrest and refused to be placed in handcuffs. Once officers were able to apprehend Sulley, they searched his wallet and found meth inside it. The Aug. 17 incident added charges of meth possession and resisting arrest on top of the meth delivery incident in January.
Sulley was previously sentenced to prison on a drug charge in 2018 and was released in November 2020. The January meth transaction came about two months after he was discharged.
In September, Sulley agreed to plead guilty to all three charges filed against him. In return, the Madison County Attorney’s Office agreed to recommend a sentence of 4 to 8 years in prison for the delivery charge, with an additional 18 months’ imprisonment for the other two charges.
In court Friday, Sulley told Johnson that he would utilize any treatment options made available to him in prison.
“I just want to say that whatever happens, I’m going to take this time and get my head right and fix the underlying problem, which is my addiction,” he said.
Chelsey Hartner, a Madison County public defender, asked that the sentences in each of Sulley’s cases be served concurrently. While Sulley was on parole during his previous prison sentence, he and his wife had a “falling out,” which triggered his resumption of drug use, Hartner said.
The root of Sulley’s crimes is addiction, Hartner said, and he has struggled with meth addiction since he was 17 years old.
“This all stems from his substance abuse. He was selling so he could continue using,” she said.
“Because it’s centered around the same pattern of addiction, I would ask the court to sentence him to concurrent terms.”
Matthew Kiernan, deputy Madison County attorney, asked Johnson to run Sulley’s sentences consecutively, noting that Sulley also has an extensive criminal history, plus charges pending out of Douglas County.
Sulley has convictions dating back to 1995 in multiple states. In Nebraska, he’s been convicted of possession of a controlled substance, carrying a concealed weapon, driving under the influence, felony theft and possession with intent to deliver
In Iowa, he had been convicted of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver two times, theft, driving under the influence and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person.
Johnson, in review of Nebraska Revised Statute 29-2260, told Sulley that drug delivery presents harm to those receiving those drugs, and to society in general.
“This is not news to you. I know this isn’t the first time you’ve heard this,” the judge said.
Johnson also told Sulley that resisting arrest has the potential to put officers in danger who are “simply trying to do their jobs.”
The judge told Sulley that solving his addiction would help him prevent future run-ins with the law.
“You had just been released in November of 2020 for delivery, and the court finds that you understood the illegality of your actions and the potential harm to others presented by your actions,” Johnson said.
Sulley was ordered to serve 4 to 8 years for the delivery charge, as well as 12 months for possession and 6 months for resisting arrest.
The Norfolk man must serve 2 years and 9 months less 67 days before he becomes eligible for parole, and he must spend 5 years in prison before his mandatory release.
Johnson sentenced others for the following Friday:
Possession of marijuana with intent to deliver
— Dominic A. Juarez, 20, 1804 Vicki Lane, No. 24, 4 to 8 years in the Nebraska Department of Corrections with credit for 26 days served, costs.
Attempted possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver
— Melannie R. Ortiz-Penalbert, 28, Madison, 36 months’ probation, 90 days in the Madison County Jail before probation ends with credit for 4 days served, 2 days to be served immediately, 180 days’ electronic monitoring, costs.
Attempted possession of methamphetamine
— Diane Pospisil, 58, 603 N. Fourth St., 6 months’ probation, 90 days in the Madison County Jail before probation ends with credit for 10 days served, costs.