July 20th, 2024

Accused receives 90 day sentence for drug offences


By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on March 25, 2022.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A 51-year-old Lethbridge man who struggled for years with drug addiction, has changed his life and is now helping others deal with their addictions.
The transformation of Jason Anthony Morin has not been easy, however, or without consequences, and on Thursday in Lethbridge provincial court he was sentenced to 90 days in jail for drug-related offences nearly two years ago.
On April 25, 2020 police received a complaint that a motorist might be impaired. Police arrived at the location provided by the caller and saw the suspect vehicle stopped in a residential parking stall. The engine was still running and Morin was passed out in the driver’s seat, but police were able to wake him.
“He was in and out of consciousness as they were dealing with him, and ultimately he was arrested,” Federal Crown Prosecutor Mark Klassen told court.
Morin was in possession of 14.6 grams of cocaine and 23.6 grams of methamphetamine, as well as a stolen credit card, and at the time of the offences, Morin was on release conditions prohibiting him from possessing drugs.
A few months later, on Aug. 14, 2020, police suspected Morin was selling drugs, and following an investigation they searched his residence, where they found 2.5 grams of meth, a stolen mountain bike, stolen cheques and stolen power tools.
Morin pleaded guilty Thursday to several charges of drug possession, possession of a stolen credit card, breach of release conditions and possession of stolen property. And although he was sentenced to 90 days in jail, he was given credit for time he already spent in custody, which completes his sentence.
Calgary lawyer Shaun Leochko pointed out that after his client was granted bail Jan. 14 of last year, he never incurred any new charges or breached any of his release conditions, including house arrest. He also spent 11 months in a recovery program at Streets Alive Mission, then began working at the mission.
Klassen noted Morin’s court matters were adjourned several times while he participated in the extensive treatment program, and after he completed the program he began helping others.
“He has been participating as a counsellor for other people suffering from addictions like he has,” Klassen said.
Morin still faces additional provincial charges, including flight from police and dangerous driving. He returns to court on those matters on April 13.
At the conclusion of Morin’s matters Thursday, all the items seized by police during their investigation were forfeited to the Crown to either be returned to their owners or destroyed. However, nearly $9,000 in cash was returned to Morin.
“I would recommend that you use if for good and not evil,” advised Judge Erin Olsen.
A co-accused, Patience Wilson, was also charged in 2020 with drug-related offences and multiple counts of possession of stolen property. However, her charges were withdrawn Thursday.

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