Two first-time offenders suffered different fates when they pleaded guilty today to having a small quantity of drugs in their possession.
While Renaldo Ramon Howell, 31, of 4th Avenue Harts Gap, Christ Church, was reprimanded and discharged, 41-year-old Kevin Anderson Carter was fined $1500 in three months by Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant when they appeared in the District ‘A’ Magistrates Court.
Howell admitted to having cannabis in his possession on December 1, while Carter pleaded guilty to committing the same offence on December 2.
The former had two grams of cannabis while the latter was found with five grams.
In begging the court for leniency, Howell said he was a hard-working citizen with four children. He said he only smoked the illegal drug on special occasions such as when he went partying and admitted that with Christmas just around the corner he was in no position to pay a fine.
“Will you continue to use drugs?” the magistrate asked him.
“For my children and for my freedom I will stop,” Howell said.
The drugs were discovered in a small ziplock bag on a bed during a search conducted at the accused’s home.
Cuffy-Sargeant opted not to order a pre-sentencing report or order him to complete community service and reprimanded and discharged him on the offence.
However, Carter was not as lucky, and he will have to pay his $1500 fine in three months or he will spend six months in prison for the drugs found during a routine traffic stop at Lears St. Michael.
While he too threw himself at the mercy of the court, he told the magistrate he would continue to use cannabis.
“It wasn’t a lot, just enough to roll one spliff and I’m asking the court to show me some leniency,” Carter said when asked by the magistrate if he had anything to say.
When Cuffy-Sargeant asked him if he intended to continue using the illegal drug he said he would “try to stop, but would continue using it in the meantime.”
He is scheduled to reappear in court on March 4, 2019.