An 18-year-old Ohio teenage boy will be sentenced to jail for his three-year involvement in a major drug ring in the Cincinnati community. Local authorities consider the teenager to be one of the most prolific drug dealers in the area, and they aggressively prosecuted him for the alleged drug crime. The judge presiding over the teenager's case reacted similarly, believing that the teenager should be sentenced to significant jail time.
Police say that the Ohio teenager was involved in a serious drug distribution ring. As previously reported on this blog, the authorities allege that the boy sold nearly $20,000 worth of marijuana per month to high school students in his local community as a part of a drug ring. The teenager was actually a sort of middleman. Several adults, aged 20 to 58, worked above the teen while he allegedly oversaw six other teenagers. When authorities finally uncovered the ring, they seized about 600 marijuana plants and found approximately $6,000 in cash in the boy's bedroom.
The teenager's family, neighbors and employer apparently did not suspect that the boy was involved with drugs, much less in a drug ring. They made pleas to the judge overseeing the case to help reduce the boy's sentencing. His employers at an Italian restaurant said that the teen is reliable and hardworking. Neighbors and friends claim that he is just a normal teen and a good student, earning mostly As and Bs. While the judge noted the positive weight of such attributes, he ultimately ruled that the seriousness of the drug crime warranted substantial jail time. Now, the teenager will face anywhere between six months and three years in juvenile prison.
The sentence could be educational for other Ohio teenagers. It demonstrates that a defense that highlights significant positive traits cannot always prevent jail time when a serious crime is at issue. Nevertheless, positive attributes like reliability, a hardworking nature and being a good student can reduce charges and sentencing. For instance, in the "little czar's" case, it may lead to him only having to serve six months in prison instead of three years.
It is important for a criminal defense to be creative. Any and all details about a teenager's life become relevant in the prosecution of a crime. This can be especially true when drug charges are at issue and serious consequences like jail time may be the penalty. As we also previously reported, this teen may have reduced the length of his prison sentence by participating in an intensive drug treatment program, demonstrated a comittment towards not repeating his behavior.
Source: Cincinatti.com, "Teen who helped run Ohio drug ring will serve time," Amanda Lee Myers, Oct. 22, 2012