A Wilmington man was sentenced to 8 years in prison last week after entering a guilty plea to heroin charges and an attempted escape from the county jail.
Montrille Damon Dailey, 26, pleaded guilty Wednesday in New Hanover County Superior Court to trafficking between 4 and 14 grams of heroin, conspiracy to traffic between 4 and 14 grams of heroin, two counts of selling heroin, attempted escape from a county jail and habitual felon, according to District Attorney Ben David. Superior Court Judge Ebern T. Watson sentenced Dailey to 96-128 months in the N.C. Department of corrections.
On three occasions between February and March 2015, Dailey attempted to sell heroin to an informant assisting law enforcement. Then, on Oct. 30, 2015, Dailey was one of two passengers in a vehicle stopped by a Wilmington officer for an expired registration. During the course of the traffic stop a police K9 detected drugs in the car.
The FBI Safe Streets Task Force assisted in the drug investigation and discovered 9 grams of heroin in the driver’s pants, David said. Dailey handed the heroin to the female driver while she was being stopped by officers. he said.
It was also discovered Dailey and the other passenger in the vehicle had traveled previously to New York to acquire heroin to distribute in North Carolina. They took a bus from New York to Fayetteville before moving the heroin to the car that was stopped in Wilmington, David said.
While at the New Hanover County Jail on the drug charges, Dailey made an attempt to escape by using the identity of his cell mate, according to a press release from David’s office. When the cell mate was due to be discharged from the facility, jail personnel realized the wrong inmate had come forward for release. Dailey was returned to custody and through an investigation into his jail calls, deputies confirmed that it was “not a mistake but a calculated effort to escape,” David said.
“The cooperation of the FBI gang task force and the police narcotics division have made our streets safer by the successful apprehension of a substantial drug trafficker with ties to gang activities in our area,” said Assistant District Attorney Timothy Severo, the prosecutor in the case.
Dailey was represented by Assistant Public Defender Kate Eaton. The investigation was conducted by the FBI, Wilmington Police Department and the New Hanover Sheriff’s Office.