Don’t Ask Sherry Johnston for a “Cup of Coffee” — Bristol Palin’s Future Mother-in-Law Busted for Selling Drugs by Texting with Code Words

Sherry Johnston, last September

Bristol Palin’s future mother-in-law might not crowd around when her son’s baby is born. Sherry Johnston, mother of Levi, himself father of Sarah Palin’s first grandchild (maybe) is kind of busy these days. Grandma Johnston was busted in Wasilla last week on five counts of sale and possession of a controlled substance, namely Oxycontin.

Johnston text message: “There’s only so many times I can go for coffee a month. The rest of the time I need to have it at home!”

The amazing part is not that someone so close to Gov. Palin, the hero of the religious right, would be involved in drug trafficking. No, the mind-blowing thing is that she sold drugs during the presidential campaign, in some cases, with the Secret Service nearby.

“Hey Sherry, quit texting for a minute and come tell these reporters that your son really is going to marry our daughter.”

“OMG. BRB. L8R.”

The affidavit says she “did admit to selling her Oxycontin pills to (an informant). The affidavit, dated Dec. 22, details how troopers used two informants to collect evidence that Johnston sold OxyContin on Oct. 11, Oct. 22 and Nov. 26…

Trooper-supervised buys were set up by cell phone text messages and took place in Target and Fred Meyer parking lots. On each occasion, troopers charge, she got $800 for 10 pills. Troopers say that in the text messages, Johnston used the code words ”coffee” and ”cup” for OxyContin.

“… there’s only so many times I can go for coffee a month. The rest of the time I need to have it at home!” read one message. Troopers said this meant Johnston was willing to sell only so many pills each month and the rest she would keep for her own use…

While Johnston, and presumably Levi, only received Secret Service protection incidentally as part of their interaction with the governor and her family, you still have to wonder at the daring of this woman.

Special Agent Darrin Blackford, spokesman for the Secret Service in Washington, D.C., said that only the governor and her immediate family were protected. Johnston was not under the agency’s protection or surveillance, he said…”Whenever she was in contact with Palin, that was probably the only time it came into play,” said trooper spokeswoman Beth Ipsen.”

Such determination is a testament to the grit of Alaskans, or at least those close to the Palins, just as Sarah told us on the campaign trail. Johnston never let a little thing like the threat of national exposure stop her from doing business, although it did seem to cramp her style.

According to the affidavit, Johnston sent a text message to one informant on Oct. 1 – well into Palin’s campaign for the vice presidency – writing: “Hey, my phones are tapped and reporters and god knows who else is always following me and the family so no privacy. I will let u no when I can go for cof.”

…Ten days after Johnston said there wasn’t enough privacy for a drug sale, she texted again to set up a meeting at a store, according to the affidavit. The document says the informant received $800 to make a purchase, meeting investigators later with 10 pills of 80-milligram Oxycontin.

A second purchase was made the following day, authorities said. This time the informant wore a hidden camera and a microphone.

A third purchase occurred Nov. 26. The informant was wired for the transaction and this time police videotaped the meeting.

The Telegraph reports an additional charge against Johnston — a felony — related to sale or manufacture of the drug, also known as “hillbilly heroin” or “Rush Limbaugh’s drug.”

The governor’s office has refused comment, stating this is not a state matter. Bristol was or is due to deliver the newest Johnston offspring at press time. Wedding plans for her and her possible fiance remain vague but they said during the campaign that they might get married this summer.


  • Lori B
    December 26, 2008 - 12:33 pm | Permalink

    OMG….I am so tired of a war on drugs that never worked and costs millions of $ When will we learn that an economy based on a penal system does not work

  • nikolai
    December 26, 2008 - 4:25 pm | Permalink

    Too bad this didn’t come out during the campaign! What fun that would have been!

    Notice that the drug buys were on Oct. 11, Oct. 22 and Nov. 26, the last one being well past the Nov. 4 election date… Coincidence? I think not!

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