Dillon Sutherlin, age 18, went before Judge John Fenn in 4th Judicial District Court Tuesday morning, June 7th per a petition from the State to revoke his probation.
Sutherlin, who plead guilty to Robbery in July, 2010, had initially been sentenced to four to five years in the Wyoming State Penitentiary. That sentence had been suspended in lieu of a split sentence and five years probation.
Sutherlin, along with Jesse Hamlin and JJ Hatch, robbed David Simmons at gunpoint on January 30th, 2009 at Simmons' home in Sheridan. The three individuals beat Simmons and stole a large bag of marijuana from him. Initially charged with Aggravated Robbery, in July, 2010 Sutherlin had plead guilty to a lesser charge of Robbery per a plea agreement with the State.
Represented by Jesse Hardy of Gillette, Sutherlin admitted to Judge Fenn Tuesday morning that on April 15th of this year, he took and ingested one Ecstasy pill, which also caused him to present positively to a drug test on April 16th showing, up as meth.
Sutherlin also admitted to being unsuccessfully discharged from Drug Court, and he admitted to having contact with and giving a ride to an unapproved visitor – his girlfriend – from a 12-Step program. All of these violated the terms of his probation.
Deputy County Attorney Darci Arsene, representing the State, told Judge Fenn that she recommended Sutherlin be ordered to the Wyoming Boot Camp in Newcastle. She said that Sutherlin has been afforded every possible opportunity – residential treatment, drug court, etc. – but none of those have worked for him. She added that being in the boot camp would provide a serious “wake-up call”; Judge Fenn said the boot camp would be a “growing up” place.
Hardy told the judge that the reason Sutherlin fell into his old habits of using is because he was still in town and in contact with friends who were not a good influence on him. He said that Sutherlin needs more structure and daily supervision, but not as severe as in the boot camp; rather, Hardy suggested Sutherlin apply to be in a halfway house-type setting either in Gillette or in Casper.
Hardy also said that both he and Sutherlin agreed that Sutherlin should remain incarcerated until he could be accepted into a program.
Sutherlin apologized for being back in court “so soon” and that he is a "diehard drug addict", but that he wants to be able "to move on with his life and not let [his] parents down."
Judge Fenn, in reviewing Sutherlin's file, opted to sentence him to four to five years in prison, but ordered him to the Boot Camp, given his substance abuse history and the Felony status of the original charge.
Sutherlin will receive credit for a combined 357 days that he has already served in jail, first for the initial Robbery charge, and then for the month and a half since violating his probation. After he finishes boot camp, he'll be placed on a three-year probation.