CARIBOU, Maine — A Caribou man arrested last year for numerous drug crimes was sentenced Wednesday to serve 14 years in prison for his crimes.
Keith I. Tingley Jr. was sentenced to 22 years in prison with all but 14 years suspended after entering a guilty plea on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine, unlawful furnishing of scheduled drugs, assault on a police officer and violation of conditions of release, according to Peter Arno, Maine Drug Enforcement Agency commander.
Tingley was arrested by the Maine Warden Service on Feb. 1, 2014, when he was found in possession of several pills, which officers initially believed to be oxycodone. After laboratory testing, it was discovered the pills actually contained fentanyl, a drug estimated to be five to 15 times more potent than heroin and linked to a sharp increase in overdose deaths, nationwide, Arno said in a written statement Thursday.
Then on April 4, 2014, agents executed a search warrant at Tinbley’s mobile home and found evidence of methamphetamine manufacturing in a crawl space under the dwelling. He was arrested and charged at with trafficking in the drug.
Four days later, after he had been released on bail, MDEA agents charged Tingley with violation of a condition of release because of his contact with a co-defendant in the methamphetamine case.
The assault charge stems from Tingly assaulting a corrections officer May 5 while he was incarcerated at the Aroostook County Jail, Arno said.
During sentencing Wednesday in Aroostook County Superior Court in Caribou, Tingley also was ordered to serve four years of probation following his release, pay restitution to the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency in the amount of $4,057 related to methamphetamine cleanup and disposal costs, and pay a $400 fine.
Arno said the investigations of Tingley involved a multi-agency effort by the Aroostook County Sheriff’s Office, the Maine Warden Service, the Maine State Police, the Caribou Police Department, the Aroostook County DA’s Office and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency.
“It is an excellent example of why multi-agency cooperation is important in bringing these types of investigations to a successful completion,” he said. “The MDEA stands committed to working with all of our law enforcement partners toward this end.”
Tingley had a prior criminal history that included theft, violation of conditions of release and speeding more than 30 mph over the limit.
In 2013 in Presque Isle, he led police on a brief vehicle and foot chase through the city after he failed to report to the jail as required and was charged with escape and summoned for attaching false plates, eluding an officer and criminal simulation.