Man sentenced to year in prison on gun, drug charges


By Joe Gorman

jgorman@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Tijuan Muldrow asked a judge in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court not to judge him by his past and that he is now focused on staying out of trouble.

Judge Shirley J. Christian, however, said it was hard to think of anything else when Muldrow, who had a history of violent offenses as a juvenile, was found in a car in June with a gun and drugs.

“You were in a car with a gun in it,” Judge Christian said Thursday. “You were staying out of trouble?”

Muldrow, 21, of Oak Street, was sentenced to a year in prison after earlier guilty pleas to charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and possession of heroin after a morning arrest June 26 during a traffic stop by city police on Oak Street on the East Side.

Reports said Muldrow had a small amount of heroin on him and also had a loaded .40-caliber handgun near him in the car. The gun was reported stolen.

Muldrow said he did not know the gun was in the car when he got in and that it was not his, but he accepted responsibility for being inside the car.

The sentence was agreed upon by prosecutors and defense attorneys. Assistant Prosecutor Nick Brevetta said the one-year sentence was agreed upon because if the case had gone to trial, there may have been issues with how the car was searched and where exactly the gun and drugs were in relation to where Muldrow was in the car.

Muldrow said he should have walked home instead of accepting a ride.

He said he did not do anything wrong and is trying to change his life, but Judge Christian said she was concerned that someone who had been in trouble before would get in a car with guns inside.

Muldrow asked the judge to consider that he is trying to do better now.

“I just ask that you don’t judge me by my past,” Muldrow said. “If you do, I will always be guilty.”

Judge Christian said she understands Muldrow is trying to do better, but she said someone with his record cannot keep getting into trouble.

“You need to recognize you can’t keep coming in here and saying, ‘I’m sorry,’” Judge Christian said.

Muldrow received credit for 68 days he has served in the county jail waiting for his case to be finalized.

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