Ogdensburg man sentenced to prison for drug sales, possession

pCANTON — An Ogdensburg man was sentenced to 13 years in prison Friday in St. Lawrence County Court for selling and possessing cocaine in Ogdensburg last year./ppJoseph A. “Drama” Peterkin Jr., 34, of 1105 Mechanic St., formerly of Brooklyn, was found guilty following a trial on Jan. 7 on three counts of third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance and three counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, all felonies./ppOn Oct. 15, 16 and 22, 2014, he was in possession of and sold cocaine to a confidential informant in Ogdensburg./ppMr. Peterkin faced a maximum of 36 years in prison for the six counts he was accused of at trial and an additional eight years for violating his interim probation./ppPrior to sentencing, Chief Assistant District Attorney David A. Haggard said Mr. Peterkin came to St. Lawrence County as a member of the drug trafficking community and when given the chance to reintegrate into society through probation, decided to go back out and continue selling drugs./ppMr. Haggard asked County Judge Jerome J. Richards to sentence Mr. Peterkin to the maximum term./ppMr. Peterkin was no stranger to County Court. On March 10, 2014, he was placed on interim probation by Judge Richards for third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance for his March 2013 sale of cocaine to a confidential informant in the city./ppMr. Peterkin passed up a plea deal offered by the district attorney’s office on Jan. 5 that would have allowed him to plead guilty to one count of felony criminal sale of a controlled substance and make admissions to violating his interim probation. As a second-felony offender, he would have been sentenced to 11 years in prison./ppAt the time of his initial 2013 arrest for cocaine sale in the city, Mr. Peterkin also was wanted for absconding from parole release on a charge of possession of narcotics with intent to sell. /ppIn 2013, if he went to trial, he faced up to nine years in prison. He then accepted a deal proposed by then-Public Defender Stephen D. Button that required Mr. Peterkin to remain in the county, not get rearrested, find a job and get his GED before his interim probation was up. His arrest in 2014 violated the terms of that deal. /ppFriday, in court, Mr. Peterkin’s attorney, Assistant Public Defender Daniel C. Ramsey, said he had respect for his client for having the courage to go to trial and see the process through. He said he originally believed him to be foolish to roll the dice but, following the trial, found that there was a “wealth of reasonable doubt” in the case against him./pp“I ask that the court not punish him for exercising his right to go to trial,” Mr. Ramsey said./ppOn Dec. 20, 2011, Mr. Peterkin pleaded guilty in Jefferson County Court of third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance. He said he took a plea deal in that court because he knew he was guilty./pp“This time I went to trial because I didn’t do this,” Mr. Peterkin told Judge Richards. “I lost at trial and if I had to it all over again I would …”/pp“I heard the assistant public defender, Daniel Ramsey, say repeatedly how he respected Mr. Peterkin,” Mr. Haggard said after leaving court. “I do not share that view. Who I respect are the 12 individuals that heard all the evidence and found Mr. Peterkin to be guilty as a drug dealer.”/ppIn addition to his prison sentence, Mr. Peterkin was sentenced to 6 years of post release supervision. He was also ordered to pay $394 in restitution and $750 in court fines, fees and surcharges./p
Source: Watertown Daily Times Latest News

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