No weekend sentence for drug dealer

Steve Sharratt
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GEORGETOWN - A small-scale pot dealer with hopes of serving weekends in jail saw his wish go up in smoke after he failed to curb his personal indulgences.

Chief Judge Nancy Orr was considering the merits of such a rare sentence in provincial court after being told Bradley Joseph Manning had no prior record, worked at a seasonal fish plant and was the caregiver to his three-year-old daughter while his partner was employed.

But weekend jail time was dashed when the judge suggested she would be setting the accused up for failure.

“You continue to use (pot), so how will you pass the 72-hour restriction (having no alcohol or drugs in your blood upon arriving at the jail)?” asked the judge.

“I’m not sure,’’ responded the 28-year-old, who pleaded guilty.

“I would have thought you would have got clear of using it if you really wanted the court to consider weekends,’’ she said. “You’re asking me to set you up for a breach (failing the test).”

The judge said it could have been a different story had Manning stopped smoking pot a month ago when he first appeared to answer to the charge. She sentenced him to three months in jail.

The Souris man told the court he only sold to a few friends and never to young people. Court was told Manning was found with scales, 22 grams of marijuana and a bit of cash when police entered his residence last fall.

He grew up in foster care, was remorseful for putting his family at risk and used pot to relieve stress.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again that until the law is changed it is still illegal,’’ said the judge. “At some point I would think people who sell should expect they might lose their job, their EI and affect their family. You didn’t want this to happen, but you are risking all of this, and you’ve put me in a position where I can’t give you weekends.”

Manning will also spend two years on probation and be required to fulfil 100 hours of community service.

Geographic location: GEORGETOWN

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Recent comments

    March 04, 2016 - 18:07

    This young man did not grow up in foster care his whole life What is the guardian trying to do make the parents look bad As you can read he is doing his time for the mistake he made grow up people comment on your own doorstep instead of taking time to make nasty comments !!!! maybe someday your gossip will come back at you !

  • Ralph
    March 04, 2016 - 07:40

    This is disgusting. Brad worked for me for two years, finished up about a year ago. During our busy season he worked 84 hours/week. He did a great job, was reliable and did whatever was asked of him. He has a young child, and from what I understand is a great father. His biggest crime here from what I can tell is he was too honest with the judge. It is deplorable that a young family is split apart, you just moved Brad from a worker to the welfare system. Over what? 22 grams?! The punishment does not fit the crime. The "damage" to society Brad caused was nothing. The damage Nancy caused is significant. Was this some strong armed-I'm going to prove a point decision?!?! Why isn't there more uproar on this decision? Liberals just won the election on a legalization platform. The only thing delaying legalization is the greedy politicians can't figure out how to split up all the profits and put the "criminals" out of business. Brad lives in a rural community. Communities that are the life blood of this agricultural island. Seasonal workers are needed to bring our crops in and land our fish. Guy has 22 grams on him, is honest and up front about his use and this is the punishment?? The community, his spouse, his child is what was punished. Where is the common sense? Get Nancy and Justin on the phone now!

      March 05, 2016 - 13:21

      Great write up Ralph THE JAIL TIME HERE depending who you are on this Island !!! And try to make the parents look bad the Guardian dont care about peoples feelings !

  • Joe Doe
    March 04, 2016 - 00:15


  • jill
    March 03, 2016 - 15:52

    He should have said that he didn't speak english.

  • Justice served
    March 03, 2016 - 08:57

    Thank you judge Orr for once again holding offenders accountable to their actions and proving that the court and system is not a day care. Too bad a few other judges wouldn't take a page from your book!

  • rob
    March 03, 2016 - 06:07

    wow !!! this guy sounds like the second coming of pablo escobar , absolute waste of time and money . the only reason this man is in trouble is because the government is still trying to figure out how much of a cut they should get before legalization . shame !!!

    • common sense
      March 03, 2016 - 20:22

      You're right. Putting this guy behind bars is the real crime here.