February 13, 2024
 |
Northampton Courthouse

By Linda Cicoira

     A 62-year-old Cape Charles area man was sentenced Monday in Northampton Circuit Court to a total of 35 years in prison for three counts of distributing cocaine and the crime of possessing a firearm while possessing the drug.

     Melvin Andrew Benton Jr., of Holland Lane, pleaded guilty to the charges, which stem from incidents that occurred during the span of several months in 2022. All but 14 years of the terms were suspended. Two counts of concealing a stolen gun, possession of a gun by a felon, and a fourth count of possession with intent to distribute cocaine were not prosecuted as part of a plea bargain deal.  

     The charges came after an Eastern Shore Drug Task Force confidential informant purchased the drugs from Benton.

     In December of 2022, 33-year-old Christal Janee Dillard sold the informant cocaine. She pleaded guilty to selling the drug as an accommodation since the informant was looking to buy from Benton, but he wasn’t home. She was sentenced to five years in prison with all but 30 days suspended and has already been through a drug rehab program. 

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February 21, 2024, 2:52 pm
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