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Berlin pair facing charges of smuggling pills in jail popcorn

Special to the Union Leader

September 17. 2012 10:53PM

LANCASTER - A Coos County Superior Court grand jury has returned felony indictments against a prison inmate and his visitor, alleging that the woman who came to see Jesse Labelle this spring at the state prison in Berlin tried to smuggle drugs to him in a bag of popcorn.

Both Jesse Labelle, 33, of East Milan Road, Berlin, and Tracy Labelle, 37, of Champlain Street, Berlin, were charged with conspiracy to commit the crime of delivery of articles to prisoners, a Class B felony.

Telephone calls - 'in furtherance of the conspiracy' - were made between the two on April 3 and April 6, in which they discussed the matter of 'obtaining contraband, and the money situation related to the plan to deliver contraband,' according to the indictments.

On April 7, Tracy Labelle, arrived at Northern Correctional Facility in Berlin for a scheduled visit and attempted to deliver to Jesse Labelle 'three blue pills' after she went into a prison bathroom and placed her hand into a bag of popcorn the two were sharing, before 'directing it to J. Labelle.'

Coos County prosecutors were not available Monday to discuss the case. New Hampshire Department of Corrections spokesman Jeffrey Lyons said Monday that Jesse Labelle had served time for a 2006 robbery conviction and a conviction for receiving stolen property, both in Coos County. He had been paroled in April 2010, but appears to have been serving additional time last April on a parole violation, according to Lyons.

Lyons said he had no information on the relationship between Jesse and Tracy Labelle, and likely would not be able to discuss that in any case.

'If she was visiting at Northern Correctional, she must have been on the approved visitors' list,' Lyons said.

In other indictments handed up Friday by the grand jury and made public Monday, Larry Garneau, 28, of College Avenue in Lewiston, Maine, was charged with three counts of theft by unauthorized taking and one count of receiving stolen property.

On the theft counts, he's accused of taking a .20-gauge Mossberg shotgun; a Marlin 30-30 rifle; a Daisy pellet gun, a Poulan chain saw, a Craftsman circular saw, a jib/scroll saw, and a Huffman air tank.

Garneau is alleged to have taken the items - all the property of Patrick Murray - on March 7 in Gorham. The receiving stolen property charge is in connection with Murray's shotgun, according to the indictments.

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