A Cumberland County man who last Monday stood trial for second offense driving under the influence but picked up a new drug charge prior to his trial was convicted by a jury last Monday.

Gregory Allen Thomas, 46, 20 John Myers Rd., will face a sentencing hearing before Criminal Court Judge David Patterson at 1 p.m. on Sept. 23.

It took the jury just over an hour to convict Thomas of first offense drunk driving. State law prohibits a jury from knowing of prior offenses during the trial so that they can judge the evidence presented and not be swayed by prior past bad acts.

Once the jury convicted Thomas of drunk driving, the jury was then sent back to deliberate on whether the conviction should be elevated to second offense.

The charge Thomas was being tried on stemmed from a Nov. 17, 2009 arrest by Cumberland County Sheriff's Deputy Tim Tutor.

Court records show that the prior conviction came in March of 2006.

Ironically, Thomas was one of two men arrested the Wednesday before his trial on a charge of promotion of the manufacture of methamphetamine, stemming from an investigation by sheriff's deputies into activities at a Retreat Dr. residence. His bond on that charge is set at $10,000.

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