Bills, Current Events, Legal, Scandals

Former University of Southern Indiana Counseling Director sentenced on Cannabis charges

An Evansville couple arrested last summer for reportedly having 73 marijuana plants with a street value of more than $40,000 at their home were sentenced today int he case in Vanderburgh Superior Court.

James Browning, 66, and his wife, Sara, 64, were arrested Aug. 26 after officers executing a search warrant at the home, at 8908 No. 3 School Road, described the processed marijuana as being “packaged for dealing.”

Pursuant to a plea agreement, the couple pleaded guilty to a charge each of possession of marijuana. But their sentences were left up to Vanderburgh County Superior Court Judge Robert Pigman.

James Browning was sentenced to a suspended sentence of 18 months at the Department of Corrections, 18 months on the Drug Abuse Probation Service and 200 hours of community service.

Pigman told James Browning that he viewed the case differently because he was the person responsible for the situation; and because of his position working with students he should know about “the drug abuse cause and the toll it takes on society.”

“Let the record reflect that most of your life has been exemplary,” Pigman said. “But you will live what’s left of your life as a convicted felon.”

Pigman sentenced Sara Browning to a one year suspended sentence, one year of probation and 50 hours of community service.

“I believe you will put this matter behind you and move on,” he said. “You made a grave erroneous decision in judgment in condoning your husband’s behavior. I am confident that I will never see each of you again in this building.”

During the short hearing the Brownings addressed the court apologizing for their actions.

Their attorney, Michael Keating said that he was thought their sentences were “well reasoned and fair.”

For more on this story, read Thursday’s Courier & Press.



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