Felicia Jewell

AUBURN — A Wilton woman charged last fall with robbery was praised Friday for her sobriety and efforts to reunify her family.

Felicia Jewell, 30, lived in Livermore Falls in November when she and two men robbed a man who had been at her apartment. One of the men with Jewell also assaulted the victim.

Soon after her arrest, Jewell’s young son and daughter were taken from her home.

She was accepted into Family Drug Treatment Court and enrolled in an intensive outpatient drug treatment program in Lewiston.

On Friday, a judge sentenced Jewell to the 13 days she served in jail on a misdemeanor theft charge. Charges of robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery were dismissed by prosecutors as part of a plea agreement.

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Already reunited with her daughter, Jewell’s son is expected to soon live with her again.

Jewell’s Family Treatment Drug Court case manager at Maine Pretrial Services testified Friday in Androscoggin County Superior Court that Jewell was an enthusiastic participant since joining the program in December, was “awesome” to work with and “always had a positive attitude.”

In a letter to the judge, Christine Mason wrote that Jewell “is determined to live a sober and healthy life for herself and her children. I believe that Felicia is contributing to society and the community in a positive way and will continue to do so in the future.”

She added that she believed putting Jewell in jail for a longer period would be a “detriment to her well-being and society.”

Also taking the stand Friday in support of Jewell was Heather Campbell, a social worker at the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, who worked toward Jewell’s permanent reunification with her children.

In her letter to the judge, Campbell wrote that Jewell could be “considered a leader and positive role model” in the court drug program and had been asked by the clinician at the Blue Willow Counseling intensive therapy program to return and “speak to the group because of her success in the program.”

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Campbell wrote that Jewell progressed from supervised day visits with her son to overnight unsupervised visits at her home in “safe and secured housing … due to her success.” Campbell wrote: “I wish all of my clients were as engaging and dedicated to reunification as Felicia.”

Attorney Henry Griffin, who was assigned to the case by the drug court, testified Friday that Jewell was a “model” client who was always on time for office visits and “always sober.”

Assistant District Attorney Nathan Walsh said the victim of the robbery and assault had hoped Jewell would serve more time in jail for her part in the crime, but had difficulty getting to the courthouse Friday. Walsh was seeking a 90-day jail sentence on the theft charge. He noted she had several convictions, including assault and criminal trespass.

She pleaded guilty in March to a misdemeanor charge of false public report for which she received a 180-day sentence that was fully suspended, plus one year of probation. She had initially lied to police, telling them that the victim had made unwanted sexual advances.

Co-defendant Duane Hanson pleaded guilty to felony criminal conspiracy to commit robbery in January and was sentenced to six months in jail. Co-defendant Bryan Legere was indicted by an Androscoggin County grand jury in March on felony charges of robbery, criminal conspiracy to commit robbery and assault. His next court date is scheduled for next month.

The victim told police that a man matching Legere’s description ordered Jewell to “roll his pockets” before the victim was assaulted. The victim never accused Jewell of assault.

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Defense attorney Patrick Nickerson wrote in his sentencing memorandum to the court that police had found at Jewell’s Livermore Falls apartment on Nov. 16, the night of the robbery, an empty half-gallon bottle of alcohol, nearly half a dozen empty cans of alcohol, two small pipes and half a pan of marijuana brownies, an indication there had been an adult drinking party.

Her two children had lived with her until the night of her arrest.

Jewell became addicted to substances, including alcohol and suboxone, in December 2015 while she was “hanging out with the wrong crowd,” Nickerson said. The apparent participants in the November robbery gave varying accounts of the events that night, he said.

Since Jewell’s arrest, she’s passed all drug screenings and tests and is “doing really well,” he said.

“We are happy with the result,” he said of Friday’s sentencing.

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