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Trial date set for criminal possession with intent to distribute

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A Missoula woman is accused of trafficking heroin in the Mission Valley. Jeri Francis Matt, 22, entered a plea of not guilty in District Court at Polson on Dec. 17 to felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs with intent to distribute.

According to court records, on June 16, 2019, a Ronan police officer observed a car parked in front of “a known drug house,” and the driver was later identified as Matt. The house was the subject of a drug raid two days prior, and after the raid, some of the inhabitants of the home were charged with drug crimes and possession of heroin.

The officer later saw the same car in the St. Luke Community Healthcare parking lot next to a blue Honda. Suspecting a drug deal might be taking place, the officer questioned occupants of both vehicles. When their stories didn’t match, the officer requested that he search the vehicle that had been parked in front of the house where the raid took place. 

The car the officer searched was driven by Matt who consented to the search. Inside the car, the officer located a small ball of a brown tar-like substance and small Batman logo baggies with heroin. The officer also found a fake shaving cream can with a false bottom and $140. Matt admitted she had purchased the heroin from a person at the home that was raided two days earlier. Matt also told the officer that she regularly travels to Missoula to purchase heroin for redistribution in Lake County.

Judge Deborah “Kim” Christopher set a trial date of May 26. Matt is at liberty on her own recognizance.

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