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Woman sentenced in connection with opioid death

Regina Malvalee Claggett-Brown

Leonardtown, MD- A Great Mills woman was sentenced to five years in prison for her role in the fatal overdose of a Calvert County man.

On Tuesday, Jan. 30, Judge David W. Densford handed down the 5-year sentence on the charge of reckless endangerment to Regina Malvalee Claggett-Brown, 47,and one year for drug possession. The two sentences will run concurrently.

Densford also ordered Claggett-Brown to pay restitution in the amount of $5,058 to the family of Paul Francis Baxter. That covers the cost of the funeral services and burial. Baxter died in October 2016 after Claggett-Brown helped him purchase heroin which caused his deadly overdose.

In October 2017, a jury found Claggett-Brown guilty of reckless endangerment in connection with Baxter’s death. During the sentencing hearing, Baxter’s mother, Victoria, offered a victim impact statement to the court.

“When she [Claggett-Brown] walked in here, her chains were removed. My chains of grief will never come off,” Baxter said. “I was given a life sentence when my son passed away. I ask for the maximum sentence, so another parent doesn’t receive another life sentence.”

Claggett-Brown took the opportunity to speak on her behalf. She apologized to Baxter’s family saying, “I think about him every day and I pray for his family every night.” Claggett-Brown also noted she’s receiving therapy and participating in an employment training program.

Assistant State’s Attorney Jaymi Sterling argued for the sentences to run consecutively, while defense attorney Matthew Connell fought to have the sentences merged because the convictions were based on the same crime. Densford sided with the defense.

Before his ruling, Densford recounted Claggett-Brown’s prior convictions, including several thefts, second-degree assault and drug possession.

Claggett-Brown received a credit of 264 days served.

Contact Joy Shrum at j.shrum@thebaynet.com

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