A Michigan man who state troopers said had 50 pounds of hydroponic marijuana in his vehicle when stopped on Interstate 75 north of Piqua in January was sentenced Friday, Aug. 10, to two years of community control after a Miami County judge was told he made "a terrible mistake."
Kasheem Hill, 26, whose address was listed at the time of arrest as Marietta, Ga., was arrested following the stop on suspicion of possession of marijuana and possession of criminal tools, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
A patrol K-9 alerted to the vehicle after responding to the scene and a probable cause search uncovered the drugs being carried in duffel bags and a large plastic bag, troopers said.
Hill waived a grand jury hearing of allegations against him and pleaded guilty to one felony charge of possession of drugs in June in county Common Pleas Court.
At sentencing Friday, defense lawyer Nick Gournaris told Judge Christopher Gee that Hill's behavior was "completely out of character for him" and he realized "what a terrible mistake" he had made. He said Hill was a hard worker and had a tremendous support system. Numerous relatives and acquaintances wrote letters to Gee vouching for Hill's character.
Hill, who apologized to the court and his family Friday. sent a letter recently to Gee asking for mercy.
"I was … presented with an opportunity to help a marijuana grower take his plants to a caregiver who would then give them to their patients. As a medicinal patient myself, I understood there would be risk," Hill wrote. "After being caught with the marijuana, I realized I had made the worst decision of my life …"
Gee sentenced Hill to two years of community control and mandatory $5,000 fine.
Gee told Hill it is a rare day when someone doesn't tell him they made a mistake and ended up in court. "I will know it was a mistake if they don't bring you back here," Gee said.
If Hill violates terms of his community control, he faces up to 30 months in prison.