An Indiana judge has decided to send a man to prison for the possession of drugs, the local outlet WBIW reports.
The convicted individual has been identified as 55-year-old Patin Earl Harris of Bedford, Indiana.
The plea deal
Harris made a plea deal with prosecutors to try to avoid an even worse fate than the one that he received.
As part of that plea deal, Harris has pled guilty to possession of methamphetamine charge. This is a level 5 felony in Indiana. Harris also pled guilty to being a habitual offender.
In exchange for these guilty pleas, Harris will now serve six years in prison. Four of those years are for the methamphetamine possession charge. Three will be served in prison, while Harris will be placed on probation for the remaining year.
The other two years that Harris received are for being a habitual offender. These two years he will serve in the Indiana Department of Correction.
The judge who approved the plea agreement, thereby sending Harris to prison, is Judge Bob Cline of Lawrence Superior Court II.
“The message here is clear”
The prosecutor who led the negotiations with Harris is Jeremy Weddle.
After Harris’s prison sentence was announced, Weddle put out a statement, saying, “the message here is clear: Habitual offenders will be held accountable for their repeated crimes in Indiana.”
Possession of methamphetamine is a serious crime because the drug is so dangerous. And, in this case, look at the other offenses that led to Mr. Harris’s habitual offender enhancement: Theft, burglary, and dealing. That’s what often accompanies substance abuse.
Weddle added that “through good police work, including K-9 involvement at a traffic stop, our community is safer with a longtime criminal off of our streets. A sentence to the DOC is appropriate in this matter.
Weddle’s approach to enforcing the law, here, is a striking contrast to what we are seeing in major cities across the country. The most egregious example, perhaps, is Alvin Bragg, the District Attorney of Manhattan, New York, who, upon taking office, ordered his prosecutors not to pursue prison sentences for all kinds of serious crimes, including robberies and burglaries.