July 19th, 2024

Lethbridge senior caught with gun and drugs put on probation


By Delon Shurtz - Lethbridge Herald on July 2, 2024.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDdshurtz@lethbridgeherald.com

A 68-year-old pensioner caught with a gun and drugs earlier this year will have a criminal record but won’t have to spend any time in custody.

Betty Hanson pleaded guilty last week in Lethbridge court of justice to charges of drug possession, careless storage of a firearm and possession of a firearm knowing its possession is unauthorized. She was handed a suspended sentence and placed on probation for a year.

A suspended sentence is a sentence imposed on conviction for a criminal offence, but which is deferred to allow the offender to serve a period of time on probation. A suspended sentence becomes a permanent entry on a criminal record.

Hanson, who court was told did not previously have a criminal record, was being investigated by the Lethbridge Police Service and the Alberta sheriff’s Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) Unit between Jan. 24 and Feb. 14 of this year.

“They commenced an investigation against Miss Hanson regarding possible trafficking allegations,” Crown prosecutor Ben Allison told court.

On Feb. 15, police searched a residence on 12C Street North where Hanson and another individual were arrested. Police found three grams of cocaine, a scale, cash, score sheets, packaging and cellphones in Hanson’s bedroom. They also found a .22 calibre rifle and ammunition on a shelf in a storage room under the stairs in the basement. Hanson did not possess a firearms licence. Police also searched Hanson’s vehicle and seized 40 Percocet pills.

“The Crown’s submission is that convictions are sufficient to accomplish deterrence and rehabilitation purposes for Miss Hanson,” Allison said.

While on probation, Hanson must attend court when required, notify the court or her probation officer of any change in her address, name, or employment. She must also reside at a specific address in the 2300 block of 13 Street North, and she is also prohibited from possessing or consuming drugs and possessing weapons.

Lethbridge lawyer Greg White joined with the Crown in recommending a suspended sentence, and asked the judge to waive the imposition of a victim fine surcharge because his client is retired and on a pension.

Additional charges of drug possession for the purpose of trafficking and possession of stolen property were withdrawn.

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pursuit diver

Just because they are a senior, it doesn’t mean they can’t be a criminal. Many do not understand this and I would ask them what they think a criminal looks like.
Many of organized criminals who drive around all day and night downtown in their cars and pickup trucks, who oversee the prostitutes and dealers are seniors. The white Chrysler 300, the gold Dodge Ram with loud diesel engine, the older burgundy Ford F-150 with loud mufflers and pipe racks on box of truck, the grey Silverado 2500 with chrome bush bumper to name just a few. They are all seniors and part of the organized crime element running the prostitutes/drug dealers.
Criminals come in all ages and aren’t all covered in tattoos, look rough and dress a specific way. They can be clean cut and wearing a suit or 16 helping a senior across the street.

Chmie

Well I’m a senior and this case with it’s laughable verdict just gave me an idea for a way to help minimize the higher cost living in Lethbridge.



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