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Wellsville woman changed with harboring fugitive waives hearing

LISBON — Facing an obstructing justice charge for allegedly harboring her fugitive ex-boyfriend, Sherman Pritt Jr. and lying to authorities who were looking for him, Stacey L. Dawson waived her right to a preliminary hearing in County Municipal Court on Monday.

Dawson, 37, Y and O Road, Wellsville, was bound over to the Common Pleas Court grand jury on the charge, which is a fifth-degree felony. She appeared out of custody before Judge Timothy McNicol with her defense attorney, Chris Amato.

Assistant County Prosecutor Abbey Minamyer told McNicol that in exchange for Dawson waiving the hearing, she would withdraw her motion to have Dawson’s bond revoked for allegedly having further contact with Pritt after he was in custody at the jail in August. Despite being court ordered to have no further contact with each other, there was reportedly a 20-minute conversation between Pritt and Dawson when he called her from the county jail on Sept. 5.

At Monday’s hearing, McNicol reminded Dawson she is to have no further contact with Pritt or she placed herself in jeopardy of having her bond revoked. Dawson indicated she understood.

Dawson, who had a protection order against Pritt, is accused of hiding him in her basement while he was being sought by law enforcement for about three weeks after walking away from a hospital where he had been taken for medical treatment.

County sheriff’s office deputies and St. Clair Township police received a tip Pritt was hiding from them at Dawson’s home despite the protection order. Dawson reportedly told deputies Pritt was not there and that she was in fear for her life regarding if he was around there. However, after gaining permission to search for Pritt in the home, he was found hiding behind a Christmas tree in the basement.

djohnson@mojonews.com

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