Teen ordered to in-patient treatment
February 13, 2012
A 19-year-old Gardnerville man who failed nearly every condition of his probation was allowed Monday to enter a six-month residential treatment program as his last chance.
District Judge Michael Gibbons warned Dennis Darter that if he fails the Salvation Army program, he would be headed for prison.
Darter was sentenced to probation in October for attempted grand larceny of a firearm.
He was taken into custody earlier this month and admitted drinking and ignoring curfew, among other violations.
Darter received a suspended three-year prison sentence for the 2010 offense with numerous condition.
He told Gibbons on Monday he completed community service, but that was the extent of his compliance. He had been ordered to obtain his high school equivalency, find employment, and abstain from all drugs, alcohol and intoxicating substances.
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Darter admitted he quit looking for work.
“I got lazy and I stopped trying for awhile. I didn’t put forward any initiative,” Darter said.
He asked Gibbons to send him to the Salvation Army program for which he’s been accepted.
“For many years of my life, I just tried to skate by for the easy life. While I was in jail, I started thinking I can’t just be throwing my life away. When I was in JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps) and when I was a jail trusty, I excelled with the structure. I don’t know what I’ll do if I don’t have somebody telling me what to do,” he said.
Darter admitted taking a .357-magnum rifle in a December 2010 break-in at a Topaz Ranch Estates garage. Also stolen were three swords and ammunition.
He was arrested with two juveniles.
Darter faced up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
He was considered for a six-month regimental discipline program through the Department of Corrections, but suffered an ankle injury which never healed.
He and his lawyer felt the injury would preclude Darter from full participation in the intense “boot camp” designed to keep youthful offenders out of prison.
Prosecutor Laurie Trotter asked that Darter’s probation be revoked based on his compliance and he be sent to prison.
“Given his almost complete failure to follow probation, the prospects of him completing this (Salvation Army) program are not good. This is a complete disregard of rules,” she said.
Gibbons warned Darter he would face prison if he fails the program.
“You have to go with the expectation of following every rule to the letter and knowing if you fail, you’ll probably go to prison,” Gibbons said.
He ordered Darter to remain in custody until he is transferred to the program.