29-year-old Samantha Owen was sentenced Thursday to five years of probation and six months of treatment-based incarceration for her role a 2018 robbery-turned-shooting that left a Newcomerstown teen missing the tip of his finger. (Tusco TV)
NEW PHILADELPHIA (Tusco TV) - The two women whose trial testimony helped prosecutors secure convictions against the three behind a drug deal turned shooting last year in Oxford Township are now finding out the consequences of their roles in that incident.
29-year-old Samantha Owen of Newcomerstown and 36-year-old Lisa Freetage of West Lafayette both appeared in Tuscarawas County Common Pleas Court for sentencing this week to close out the year-long case that yielded prison terms ranging from 11 to 19 years for Douglas Casteel, Lucian Lambes and Ian Cultrona. Prosecutor Ryan Styer says it has been a huge undertaking to put together a case of this magnitude.
"With that comes a lot of information. Detective Moore conducted a lot of interviews but he also sought search warrants and subpoenas for a lot of phone information through phone providers and information that was extracted from the cell phones and along with that comes processing that, trying to make sense of it, and then trying to simplify it for presentation to a jury, so that takes a lot of work," he says.
Owen and Freetage both entered no-contest pleas to reduced charges in September, Owen to one count of aggravated robbery and Freetage to one count of complicity. Tuscarawas County Common Pleas Court Judge Edward O’Farrell sentenced Owen Thursday to five years of probation and six months of treatment-based incarceration and Freetage Friday to two years of probation. Styer says of all the individuals involved, Freetage was the least culpable and the most cooperative.
"We’re grateful that she helped us essentially get significant prison sentences for the three men who had horrible violent criminal records, horrible histories with drugs and drug dealing and were really the three worst actors in this whole mess," he says.
The judge reserved a four-year prison term for Owen and one year for Freetage for any serious probation violations, and Owen also faces six months of jail time if she does not successfully complete the treatment program.