By Lethbridge Herald on January 23, 2018.
A Coaldale man set to stand trial Monday on multiple weapon and drug-related charges, pleaded guilty instead and was sentenced to nearly two years in jail.
Shane Desmond Journoud pleaded guilty in Lethbridge provincial court to one count each of drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and careless storage of a firearm. He was sentenced to 20 months in jail, but given credit for 312 days spent in pre-trial custody, leaving just over nine months to serve. He is also prohibited from possessing weapons for life.
Crown prosecutor John Oman told court that police investigating drug trafficking stopped and searched a motor vehicle last summer, then searched a home in Coaldale. Journoud had “a number of different things,” including 15.8 grams of cocaine, Oman said. Police also found a loaded .22-calibre rifle under a bed in the basement suite where Journoud lived with Rikki Marie Peters.
Peters was also charged with multiple weapon and drug-related offences, but they were withdrawn by the Crown Monday.
Oman pointed out Journoud, 27, has an extensive criminal record dating back to when he was a youth. His adult record includes convictions for assault, mischief, break and enter, assault with a weapon, drug possession, and assault causing bodily harm.
Defence lawyer Tracy Hembroff said she and the Crown began working long before Christmas to resolve the case, and while there may have been some challenges for the Crown had the matter gone to trial, both sides reached a compromise and agreed on 20 months in jail.
“He’s taken the hit, so to speak,” Hembroff said, adding that two others — the homeowner and his girlfriend — were also charged.
Police reported last July that they were investigating organized crime in Lethbridge and Coaldale when they made the arrests. They seized more than $10,000 — considered the proceeds of crime — as well six firearms and cocaine, oxycondone and oxycocet pills, “magic” mushrooms, marijuana and fentanyl.
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