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Trucker pleads guilty for hauling heroin later stolen from evidence locker

Sun-Times Media, LLC, Southtown Star,

Will County, IL

A California man set to go to trial this week in Will County for allegedly hauling heroin in his semi truck — heroin that later was stolen from the sheriff’s evidence locker — is going to prison instead.

Jose Zamago-Mena, 42, of Sun Valley, Calif., pleaded guilty Thursday to possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver. Judge Edward Burmila sentenced him to four years in prison.

Zamago-Mena was arrested Feb. 21, 2011, after police stopped his semi heading north on Interstate 55 near Shorewood and discovered the stash of drugs.

About eight months later, the $250,000 worth of heroin removed from Zamago-Mena’s truck was stolen from the sheriff’s evidence locker.

In March 2012, Terry D. Jenkins, 44, of Midlothian, and Joseph D. Crutchfield, 23, of Crestwood, each was charged with burglary for the crime. Both pleaded guilty in August 2012. Jenkins was sentenced to nine years in prison, Crutchfield to three years.

A third person involved in the theft died of heart failure with opiates in his body not long after the drugs were stolen, authorities said.

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