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Australia Man Sentenced for Addiction-Related Crimes

For those who choose crime to support an addiction to a drug they should never have taken, jail time seems only fitting. The Herald recently reported that a Sandy Lake man was sentenced Friday for up to 1 ½ years in jail as a result of four separate cases in Mercer County over the past year.

Brian L. McNamee, 34, pleaded guilty on October 13th, telling the Common Pleas Court Judge Thomas R. Dobson that he had taken “the road less traveled” and his actions have disgraced himself and his family. Unfortunately, that road is becoming more and more crowded with addicts increasingly breaking the law to support their habit.

The charges levied against McNamee include twice robbing the Wal-Mart Supercenter in October 2008, for possessing an instrument of crime, including the use of a pry bar to try to break into a garage in Mercer in November 2008. McNamee had also visited a doctor in January and failed to return to jail after the appointment.

McNamee claims to be fighting a drug addiction, but apologized for his actions. He placed much of the blame on the addiction saying if he didn’t have the problem, he wouldn’t need quick money and he would have thought twice before doing something wrong.

“I’m not a thief. I never was. I never will be,” McNamee said in The Herald, making light of the fact that addiction or no addiction, he still committed the crimes.

In his sentencing, McNamee received:

• 73 days to 1 year in Mercer County Jail followed by 1 year of probation as a result of the Wal-Mart robberies.

• $1,015 in restitution to Wal-Mart for stealing electronics and cologne.

• 1 year of probation for an attempted garage break-in.

• 56 days to 6 months in the county lockup for the Jan. 21 failure to return.

• $1,800 restitution for cashing a bad check at Stop and Save, Wheatland.

• 50 hours of community service.

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