Getting caught ended up being good for Scott Semer, his lawyer said.
By BOB JACKSON
VINDICATOR COURTHOUSE REPORTER
YOUNGSTOWN -- Judge R. Scott Krichbaum said drug dealers are "the scum of the earth" who deserve to go to prison.
Then he made an exception for Scott Semer, placing the Poland man on five years' probation. Semer, 22, of Youngstown-Poland Road, had pleaded guilty in June to three felony counts of drug trafficking.
"People who sell drugs should go to the penitentiary -- that's the bottom line in my book," said Judge Krichbaum, of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.
Assistant Prosecutor Robert Duffrin had requested that Semer be locked up and then released early on shock probation. But Judge Krichbaum sided with defense attorney Lou D'Apolito, who asked for probation and assignment to Community Corrections Association.
The Ohio Adult Parole Authority also recommended probation and CCA for Semer after doing a background check on him.
"This is probably the best thing that could happen to this young fellow, to be caught and have to admit to doing this," D'Apolito said before Semer was sentenced.
He said the shock of being arrested and fear of possibly going to prison should persuade Semer to change his ways.
Dent: Poland Police Chief Russell Beatty said the conviction and sentence will make a dent in drug trafficking in the village.
"I have no doubt that [Semer] was a major contributor to the drug problem here," Beatty said. "I think this will definitely help us."
Duffrin said Semer sold Ecstasy and other illegal drugs in the Poland area in March and April.
Ecstasy is usually sold as a capsule and is a favorite with young adults. It is a mind-altering drug with amphetaminelike and hallucinogenic properties. Users can lose inhibitions. Some pills can distort sound and vision.
A second suspect, David S. Hay, 23, of Clovermead Avenue, Poland, pleaded guilty in June to a misdemeanor count of attempted drug trafficking and will be sentenced Aug. 22.