| Posted: Saturday, Sep 21, 2013 06:00 am
Sentence date set
A man who sold tainted drugs linked to the deaths of eight Albertans will be sentenced in October.
James Douglas Hardy pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking in March.
During an undercover operation Hardy sold marijuana and ecstasy to an officer. It was later determined the ecstasy was laced with a contaminant called para-Methoxymethamphetamine (PMMA).
PMMA is known to interact with the ecstasy, delaying the high and making people take more of the drug.
Since July 2011, the substance has been linked to eight overdose deaths in Alberta, one of which was in the Morinville area.
Hardy’s sentencing date is set for October 28 at 11 a.m. at the St. Albert courthouse.
A man who broke his release conditions just 19 minutes after leaving jail, will be back in his cell for the next three months.
Bruce Gambino appeared in court Monday via closed circuit television (CCTV) from the Edmonton Remand Centre (ERC) and pleaded guilty to assault and five counts of breaching his recognizance.
On Aug. 18 RCMP were called to a Grandin home about a domestic dispute.
Court heard that after Gambino’s common law wife questioned his fidelity after seeing a frequent number on his phone bill, the 37-year-old become enraged. He grabbed her by the throat, carried her to the kitchen, pushed her against the stove and then shoved her to the ground.
Gambino was arrested but released before midnight. A mere 19 minutes after leaving jail Gambino called and texted his common law wife several times. One of the conditions of his release was to have no contact with her.
Gambino appeared teary eyed and remorseful, describing his wife of 11 years as the “best thing that has ever happened to him.”
The Crown recommended a four to six month jail sentence, citing the quick and repeated breaches of his release conditions as a “blatant disregard for court order.”
Defence counsel pushed for 30 days, asking the court to consider that the complainant only sustained minor injuries and the calls and texts from Gambino were apologetic, not harassing in nature.
Gambino’s wife told the court she believed his apology was genuine and this was the first time he was violent in a more than decade-long relationship.
“I still love him,” she said. “But I’m not a 20-year-old woman who is going to jump in with both feet. I’ve thought this through. I’m not afraid of him.”
Judge Bruce Garriock sentenced Gambino to 120 days in jail and 18 months probation upon release. He can have full contact with his wife but will have to seek counselling as directed by his probation officer. He has 91 days left to serve.
Borrowing without asking
A man who was crashing on his friend’s couch and took his car without asking, will be spending the next two weeks in jail.
Stephen Wayne Burke appeared via CCTV from the ERC in court on Monday and pleaded guilty to taking a motor vehicle without the consent of the owner.
On Sept. 9, police received a report of a stolen 1995 Nissan Maxima. The caller told officers Burke had been staying with him for a few days and had used the car (with consent) before. When he called Burke that morning looking for his car, Burke said it was parked in Stony Plain and he would bring it back. Before he could return it, Stony Plain RCMP tracked it down.
Court heard Burke has a criminal record dating back to 2002 with charges ranging from fraud and resisting a peace officer, to uttering threats and assault with a weapon.
Garriock handed him a 14-day jail sentence to be served concurrently with breach charges out of Stony Plain.