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Mason City couple jailed on child endangerment and drug charges

Two Mason City parents are in custody after a warrant was issued for their arrest on December 14th for possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, failure to affix a drug tax stamp, and child endangerment charges.

Cerro Gordo County Sheriff’s deputies located 20 year old Vallery Mae Thomas shortly before 11am yesterday. Thomas was transported to the Cerro Gordo County Jail where she remains today on a $12,000 cash or surety bond.

22 year old Benjamin Arthur Janssen turned himself in on the warrants shortly after 8pm last evening. Janssen remains in jail today on a $10,000 cash or surety bond.

The charges are in relation to an alleged incident on November 8th in which marijuana was found within reach of their 8 month old infant.

As part of a child abuse investigation by the Department of Human Services drug tested their daughter. The results of the drug test found a positive test result for marijuana in their infant’s system.

Possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and failure to affix a drug tax stamp are both class D felonies. A defendant convicted faces a maximum of five years in prison. The sentence may be deferred or suspended, except for a forcible felony. Fines range from a minimum of $750 to a maximum of $7,500.

Child Endangerment is an aggravated misdemeanor. A defendant convicted faces maximum of two years in prison and a $6,250 fine.

The Department of Human Services may also request a child in need of assistance case in juvenile court to protect the child’s interests.


Vallery Mae Thomas

Benjamin Arthur Janssen


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