HOUSTON COUNTY, Ala. (WDHN) — A woman who was linked to a former Houston County Assistant District Attorney through social media pleaded guilty Monday afternoon even before a jury selection in her trial was finished.

Jaime Connolly, a woman who had more than 21 drug charges from Houston County walked into the courtroom thinking that her cases were going to trial.

Judge Benjamin Bowden from Covington County was presiding as circuit judges in Houston County recused themselves.

After three hours of jury selection, Judge Bowden announced to the jury that they were no longer needed and that a plea deal had been reached.

Connolly has been linked to a relationship with former Houston County prosecutor Mark Johnson through messages on Facebook.

In February, Connolly wrote a letter to the court alleging that Johnson friended her on Facebook in October 2021 and the two began having an online relationship.

Johnson was the prosecutor in one of Connolly’s court cases in 2019.

Connolly’s attorney says he doesn’t think that the alleged situation played into the plea deal.

“That was never brought up in this conversation,” Connolly’s attorney David Harrison said. “It was never brought up in negotiation with myself and the AG’s office. So absolutely the integrity of the system has prevailed here.”

Johnson was placed on leave in February.

After being indicted on multiple ethic charges by a grand jury in October 2022, Johnson turned himself into the Houston County jail where he bonded out nearly an hour later.

The District Attorney’s office later fired Johnson.

“We plead to a lesser included offense from trafficking to possession with intent to distribute,” Harrison said. “Because of priors the minimum sentence was 20 and the maximum sentence was life. We took a twenty-year sentence split to serve four years.”

Trafficking methamphetamine is a Class A felony where the minimum sentence is life in prison, whereas possession with intent to distribute is a Class B felony with a minimum of 2 to 20 years.

Harrison says that Connolly has arguably already served 36 months of her sentence and they have requested that she serve the remaining 12 months in the work release program.