News

Quincy woman caught with meth at two hotels gets six-year prison term

Heather M. Hasting
Posted: Apr. 10, 2013 10:46 pm Updated: Apr. 25, 2013 1:15 am

By DON O'BRIEN
Herald-Whig Staff Writer

A Quincy woman was sent to prison Wednesday after she was arrested twice last year in methamphetamine raids at two different Quincy hotels.

Heather M. Hasting, 25, will serve six years in the Illinois Department of Corrections after being sentenced by Judge William Mays. Hasting was sentenced to four years on an unlawful meth manufacturing charge and two years on a possession of meth charge. The sentences will run consecutively.

Hasting pleaded guilty to both charges on Feb. 6. As part of the plea agreement, Mays was limited to a sentencing cap of eight years. He gave her the minimum sentence allowed for both charges.

Hasting put her head on the defense’s table and sobbed after learning she was heading to prison. She lashed out at Mays after he left the room after the hearing was over.

“Everybody thinks Judge Mays is awesome,” she yelled sarcastically through tears.

Hasting had hoped to get probation.

“What I’ve done is absolutely wrong,” she told Mays while fighting back tears. “If I get probation, I will prove to everybody that I can get a job and keep it and get my daughter back.”

Hasting was one of two people arrested on March 3, 2012, at the Days Inn, 200 Maine, as part of raid conducted by the West Central Illinois Task Force. Just over two weeks after posting bond in that case, Hasting was one of three people arrested at the Bel Aire Hotel, 2314 N. 12th.

She admitted to smoking meth before the March arrest and to buying pills that led to the second arrest.

First Assistant State’s Attorney Gary Farha argued that Hasting should be sent to prison because she has twice tested positive for marijuana use since being out on bond and recently a TASC evaluation meeting.

“We’re recommending that she be sentenced to the Department of Corrections for six years,” Farha said. “She has earned herself that trip. She has put forth minimum effort and this is a case that required maximum effort from her.”

Mays was concerned that Hastings continued to deal with meth after receiving probation on a 2008 meth charge, and for using marijuana.

“Cannabis doesn’t just fall out of the sky,” he said. “You had to be doing that with somebody. It’s only a question of time before you start using meth again. I can’t utilize the resources of the Probation Department to fix a problem that you don’t seem to want to have fixed.”

Hasting was given credit for a total of 156 days served in the Adams County Jail. She had been free since posting $6,000 in bond on Aug. 27.

— dobrien@whig.com/221-3370