A former West Virginia court clerk accused of drug charges may wrap up the case against her with a plea bargain. On Dec. 10, the judge overseeing the case noted that a plea agreement may be close at hand for the woman accused of attempting to operate a meth manufacturing laboratory out of her home. The judge denied a motion by the woman’s attorney to dismiss the indictment against her in a hearing nearly two years after charges were initially brought against her. The judge said that the delay in the case was attributable to challenges in reaching a plea deal rather than a deliberate attempt to deny her a speedy trial.

The woman was indicted on 38 drug charges in March 2018 along with her then-husband and another couple. The four people were accused of attempting to visit local drugstores to purchase pseudoephedrine, an over-the-counter decongestant, to get the raw ingredients to manufacture methamphetamine. She was accused of one count of conspiracy to manufacture meth and two counts of being an accessory before the fact to the unlawful possession of pseudoephedrine. She was also charged with one count of child neglect or injury based on allegations that her 10-year-old daughter would be present during the attempted manufacturing.

The judge in the case said that he had rejected a tentative agreement in July 2018 that would have seen the woman receive a deferred sentence. Currently, he said that she is undergoing a mental health examination and investigation prior to a plea. He ordered the investigation due to her former position as the county circuit clerk.

When people are convicted on drug charges, they can face serious consequences, including jail time, heavy fines and a felony criminal record. People accused of drug offenses may work with a criminal defense attorney to challenge accusations by police and prosecutors.