Robert Bush 6:31 p.m., May 18
Lee Edward Amesquita, 37, was sentenced to 8 years prison this morning, for three separate counts of mailing heroin into jail. Amesquita sent the hidden drug to his incarcerated girlfriend, according to evidence presented during a two-week trial last April.
Amesquita cleverly ironed out the sticky black tar heroin between sheets of bakers parchment paper, and then sandwiched that between identical greeting cards, which he then mailed to 42-year-old Marion Lopez at the Vista jail. After the illicit ingredients were discovered and intercepted, the girlfriend was discovered dead in her jail cell. An autopsy determined Marion Lopez died of respiratory failure due to heroin withdrawal; her death was recorded in June 2011.
Lee Edward Amesquita has a prior “strike” conviction and has been convicted of four separate felonies in past, according to prosecutor Jon Oliphant.
“I don’t think it’s particularly rare that narcotics are mailed into the jail, they do get confiscated regularly,” said the senior prosecutor. “I suspect that only a small percentage are actually intercepted.” The deputy district attorney noted that drugs are smuggled in tiny portions, which he said makes the drugs a valuable commodity in the jail, “worth perhaps ten times what they would be worth on the streets.”