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Man gets one year for pounds of marijuana

The Lyman County courthouse in Kennebec. (Republic file photo)

KENNEBEC—A California man arrested in July in Lyman County with 71 pounds of marijuana in his car was sentenced Wednesday to spend one year in jail.

On July 20, a South Dakota Highway Patrol officer pulled over an eastbound blue minivan with Washington plates that had reportedly been following another vehicle too closely. The minivan was driven by then-29-year-old Asa Bishop of Red Bluff, California.

Bishop reportedly told the officer that he was driving the van to Florida to deliver it to his mother, but was unable to say where his mother lived. Bishop granted the officer permission to search the minivan, and 71 pounds of raw marijuana were found in a false compartment that had been built into the floor of the van.

Bishop was arrested and charged with possession of one to 10 pounds of marijuana, a Class 4 felony; possession of more than 10 pounds of marijuana and possession with intent to distribute one pound or more of marijuana, both of which are Class 3 felonies, and use or possession of drug paraphernalia, a Class 2 misdemeanor.

He entered not guilty pleas on July 26 and pleaded guilty to possession of one to 10 pounds of marijuana on Nov. 29.

Bishop was sentenced Wednesday to 36 months in the penitentiary with 24 months suspended and credit for 19 days served. He was ordered to pay $161.50 in fines and court costs.