Gavel

A Tucson woman was sentenced to three years of supervised probation on Dec. 16 after she pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful possession of a dangerous drug, a Class 4 felony.

According to her pre-sentence report, Jami Michelle Baker, 45, entered the United States through the pedestrian lanes at the Dennis DeConcini Port of Entry on Oct. 7, 2019.

Baker told the U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer that she had last crossed to Mexico the previous Friday. However, her statement didn’t match her travel itinerary.

The officer further asked if she was bringing anything back from Mexico, court documents show, to which Baker nervously responded that she was just bringing back a can of coffee.

Baker was then referred to secondary inspection, where another CBP officer noticed that the can was lighter than its label suggested and the label was in English rather than Spanish.

Upon opening the can, the agent noticed that it contained a small amount of coffee and a false compartment.

X-ray images of the can revealed an empty false compartment, court documents show.

A further inspection led to two beer cans inside Baker’s purse, both of which had secret compartments. One contained a plastic bag with a white powdery substance, and the other carried a plastic bag with pink pills.

The white substance tested positive for 7.7 grams of methamphetamine, the pre-sentence report states, while the pink pills tested positive for dextrose and citric acid, and were suspected to be candy.

Baker then admitted to CBP agents that she had crossed into Mexico through the pedestrian port with another woman earlier that day, with the purpose of smuggling drugs into the United States. The two women were to split a profit of $1,200, with Baker receiving $500.

Baker said she bought the hidden compartment containers at a smoke shop, and the methamphetamine was packed inside in Mexico.

She was taken to the hospital for medical clearance, then booked into the Santa Cruz County jail, where she served a total of 43 days prior to sentencing.

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