Mt. Vernon Man Looks To Have Plea Withdrawn

(MT. VERNON, IL) — A Mt. Vernon man is looking to withdraw his plea after being sentenced to prison. Forty-two year old John E. Payne pleaded guilty to Class X Felony manufacture of methamphetamine between 15 and 100 grams in May 2016. Payne was sentenced to 14 years in prison after the charge he pleaded to was amended from a charge of Class X Felony manufacture of methamphetamine over 900 grams. Additional charges in the case were also dismissed per the plea agreement. The plea allows Payne to serve half of his sentence with good behavior as opposed to 85 percent with the more serious charge. The new motion filed with the court alleges that Payne takes medication for severe depression and anxiety, and those medications were withheld during his incarceration at the Jefferson County Justice Center, which may have led to confusion on the part of the defendant during the court proceedings. Due to the possibility of Payne’s previous representation, Public Defender Scott Quinn, being called as a potential witness in the hearing, Resident Judge Jo Beth Weber approved the assignment Assistant Public Defender Ed Anderson over the objection of Quinn. A status hearing on the motion has been set for July 6th at 9:30 a.m.