Front Royal man pleads guilty to drug distribution

Stuart Lee McClanahan

FRONT ROYAL — A local man pleaded guilty on Monday to one of three counts of hydromorphone distribution as part of a plea agreement.

Stuart Lee McClanahan, 45, pleaded to the charge stemming from an April 2016 incident where he sold two white pills of Dilaudid, an opioid pain medication, to a confidential informant for $198. Police had given the informant $200 to buy the drugs, but McClanahan had asked the informant to purchase some aspirin for him. There was also an unknown third-party who took part in the transaction, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Michael Fleming said.

There were two other charges of hydromorphone distribution against McClanahan, but the prosecution dismissed them as part of the plea agreement. Fleming added that some of the reasoning behind the agreement – where McClanahan will not serve any active prison time – was McClanahan’s health condition, and McClanahan’s attorney, John Bell, concurred.

“Mr. McClanahan is in the middle of a long and painful process,” Bell said in reference to McClanahan’s medical treatment.

Circuit Judge Ronald L. Napier sentenced McClanahan to five years imprisonment and a $500 fine, all of which were suspended. McClanahan must complete two years of supervised probation, and must pay almost $600 in restitution from the arranged drug transactions.