Minden man gets 12 years despite ‘Breaking Bad’ defense
A Minden man was sentenced to up to a dozen years in prison after he tried the “Breaking Bad” defense to account for his drug trafficking.
Jerold Brewer, 48, said he received a diagnosis of congestive heart failure, which started him using drugs, which is how he ended up in the drug sales business.
Brewer told District Judge Tod Young that when he received the diagnosis that he had weeks to live in March 2019 he wanted to stop feeling, so he started using.
“I’m surprised I’m still here,” Brewer said.
Young pointed out that the last sale in September was around an ounce.
“That’s not typically a user’s stock,” he said. “It seems more like a professional sales person.”
Young sentenced Brewer to 3-8 years for trafficking in a controlled substance and 1-4 years for sales of a controlled substance and made the sentences consecutive.
Brewer was arrested in an early morning raid on Sept. 10 at a County Road address in Minden.
The raid came a week after another occupant of the home was taken into custody for attempting to intimidate a code enforcement officer.
John Patrick Zalewski, 48, was sentenced to 3-9 years in prison on charges of maintaining a place for the unlawful use of a controlled substance, sales of a controlled substance and intimidating a public officer.
Prosecutor Chelsea Mazza said Brewer and Zalewski trashed the County Road home.
Defense attorney Matthew Ence pointed out that Brewer had been law abiding for nearly 20 years before the drug raid.
“He was told he didn’t have long to live and began to think he had nothing to lose,” Ence said.