Man must serve six months in drug charge |

Man must serve six months in drug charge

by Sheila Gardner

A 23-year-old Gardnerville man was ordered Tuesday to serve six months in Douglas County Jail as part of his probation on a felony drug charge.

District Judge Dave Gamble sentenced Phillip McElvain to 32 months in prison, suspended, and placed him on probation for five years.

He pleaded guilty to being under the influence of a controlled substance.

McElvain was arrested in July with cocaine, ecstasy, and marijuana, and also was accused of driving under the influence.

The arrest came five months after McElvain completed a two-year program in Western Regional Drug Court following a conviction on two drug sales charges in 2009.

“This is a sad situation,” said his lawyer, Derrick Lopez. “He’s been through drug court, graduated, and ends up back in drug involvement which he regrets. It’s going to hurt his life. He will have a felony conviction. He had a good job and he hopes it’s still available.”

“I strived to do my best, intending it to be a life-changing experience,” McElvain said. “When I got out (of drug court), I got into partying. I fell away from the program, from what I had been taught.”

Gamble asked McElvain how he intended to spend the next 60 years of his life.

“I hope somewhere along the line that you want to make that change permanent or this will be your life,” Gamble said.

McElvain must abstain from drugs and alcohol for five years and is subject to random search and seizure.