Escape Reality dancer ‘Star’ sentenced up to 20 yearsPublished 10:55am Thursday, September 24, 2009
By NORMA LERNER
CASSOPOLIS – A dancer from Escape Reality in Edwardsburg known as “Star” got 16 months to 20 years Friday morning in Cass County Circuit Court on conspiracy to deliver ecstasy and deliver ecstasy, and 149 days jail with credit for 149 served on conspiracy to deliver cocaine, delivery of cocaine less than 50 grams, four counts of lewd and lascivious conduct, and failing to inform sex partners that she was HIV positive.
Judge Michael Dodge sentenced Melissa Goodman, 24, of Elkhart, Ind. saying she had a plea agreement of 18 months. He told her she would have gone to prison for 30 months but with the sentence bargain the court could accept it or reject it.
He told her that her cooperation and Assistant Prosecutor Diab Rizk’s agreement of 16 months, the court will deviate from her guideline range. That was 30 to 50 months. Other related counts were dropped off the April 22 offense at the strip joint at Pleasant Lake, 68502 Dailey Road.
Rizk said Goodman performed serious actions and jeopardized a number of individuals, but she did agree to cooperate with criminal investigations.
Defense attorney Dale Blunier said he appreciated the recommendations of the prosecutor and noted Goodman has no prior record. He said she is a 24-year-old single mother and was trying to support her children.
“She cares about her children and knows what she did was wrong. She does have HIV,” he said. She has changed her life and wants to finish her education and go to college to improve herself. Her children were taken away, and she is trying to get them back. Goodman apologized to the public.
Dodge recalled that Goodman was employed at Escape Reality from Feb. 11 to April 22 as a dancer and entertainer known as “Star.” He said she was engaged in lewd and lascivious dancing and was caught after being paid by a confidential police informant. She also took money from customers for cocaine and ecstasy and told the supplier to deliver them to the customers. He said if she qualifies for boot camp, he would decide on it at the time.
Her fines and costs amounted to $2,290.
Other sentencings are as follows:
• David Vales, 48, 630 Rockford St., Elkhart, Ind., received three years probation plus 150 days jail for driving while intoxicated, third offense, driving while license suspended, unlawful plates, open container in a vehicle in Ontwa Township, Edwardsburg, on June 22. His blood alcohol level was 0.24 percent, three times the legal limit. His costs totaled $1,918.
• Steven Parrish, 24, 26411 Sweetbriar St., Edwardsburg, received two years probation for larceny in a building $1,000 or more plus larceny in a building on Sweetbriar Street, on two occasions in June. He is to pay $1,408 costs plus restitution of more than $8,000 for jewelry that he stole in his neighbor’s house.
Dustin Reichel, 21, 89640 County Road 690, Benton Harbor, received two years probation for possession of cocaine less than 25 grams and 30 days jail plus 50 hours of community service for second-offense operating a vehicle while intoxicated in Dowagiac on May 28. He is to pay $1,121 costs.
• Terrel Nickens, 20, 1739 Broadway St., Niles, received one year in jail for first-degree home invasion, unlawful driving away a motor vehicle, larceny in a building, habitual-second home invasion at Amerihost Apartments, Dowagiac, on July 13. He is to pay $196 costs.
• William Carmon, 47, 16695 Donnell Lake St., Vandalia, received 300 days jail for carrying a dangerous weapon and 93 days jail for operating a vehicle while intoxicated on March 22 in Vandalia. He is to pay $181 costs.