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Ex-selectman faces cocaine charge again

RUTLAND, Vt. -- A former Mount Tabor selectman recently released from a nearly two-year prison term on a cocaine charge is back behind bars for allegedly possessing the drug again.

Jerry Merrow, 49, who served as a Mount Tabor selectman in the early 1990s, pleaded not guilty Thursday in Rutland District Court to the latest felony charge of cocaine possession. He was jailed for lack of $50,000 bail.

Vermont State Police arrested Merrow late Wednesday night after responding to a report of a vehicle off the road on Route 4 in Ira, according to court records.

Police said Merrow told them he was driving the Pontiac Grand Prix west on Route 4 and that he fell asleep. Police said they found 10 plastic bags with cocaine weighing a total of 33 grams, including the bags, in the car. Police also said they found more than $2,000 in cash.

Merrow, who is not employed, also told police that he had just recently bought the vehicle, court records stated.

Merrow has seven felony and six misdemeanor convictions. Three of the felony convictions involve drug offenses.

He was released from prison in May after serving 23 months in jail on a charge of cocaine possession. That stemmed from his arrest in May 2002 by Vermont State Police.

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