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   These are the stories we are working on for this week's newspaper:
  • Quick fix: A plumbing problem is forcing the Plumas Unified School District to move its headquarters to the former probation building.
  • Lesser charges: A former Chester Public Utility District general manager pleaded guilty to reduced charges last month in connection with unauthorized use of a district credit card at a Reno strip club.

Jury convicts Quincy man of drug charges

  A jury last week found Gerald Edmund Nichols, of Quincy, guilty of two drug charges and a felony count of failing to appear in court.

  Nichols, 44, could face more than eight years in jail when he is sentenced Sept. 13 in Plumas County Superior Court.

  The jury deliberated for about an hour before returning guilty verdicts on all of the charges against Nichols on Thursday, Aug. 15. The charges included two counts of possession of methamphetamine for sale and one count of failing to appear. The convictions included two enhancements for committing a felony while out on bail.

  “I am very appreciative of the excellent work by our detectives unit and for the consideration and just verdict delivered by the jury,” District Attorney David Hollister said. “This verdict sends a strong message to our community that those peddling this type of poison will be addressed in an appropriate manner.”

  Nichols’ conviction stemmed from three separate arrests. He was first arrested March 18 when detectives served a search warrant and found 20 grams of methamphetamine in his Quincy home. They also found five fentanyl patches, five cellphones, a police scanner and items associated with weighing, packaging and selling drugs.

  During the search, a sheriff’s detective answered a call on one of Nichols’ cellphones. The call was from a woman seeking to buy drugs from Nichols. The woman thought the detective was Nichols and was arrested when she arrived at Nichols’ residence to buy fentanyl.

  Nichols was released on his own recognizance before being arrested on the same charges two weeks later following a tip from his roommate that he was “selling again.” That time detectives found 3.69 grams of methamphetamine.

  He was again released from jail after posting bail.

  On July 8, Nichols was granted permission to dismiss his public defender and represent himself in court.

  However, he was reportedly disruptive during court proceedings and introduced a series of obscure motions, testing the court’s patience in the process.

  Nichols was arrested for a third time after failing to appear for his July 17 trial.

  After waiting more than an hour for Nichols to arrive at the court, Judge Ira Kaufman dismissed the dozens of prospective jurors and issued a $200,000 bench warrant for Nichols’ arrest.

  Nichols was arrested a few hours later in Chilcoot. He told the arresting officers that he was not the Gerald Edmund Nichols they were looking for.


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