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Long-time drug dealer sentenced to 12 years in state prison

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 23 February 2015 at 12:00 am

JW Hardy

ALBION – An Albion resident with a criminal history going back four decades was sentenced to the maximum of 12 years in state prison today.

JW Hardy, 57, was convicted by a jury last month on multiple counts of criminal sale and criminal possession possession of controlled substances.

Hardy has been arrested for drug crimes going back to 1976. Assistant District Attorney Susan Howard noted that long record during Hardy’s sentencing today.

“The criminal history is undeniably extensive,” said Hardy’s attorney Thomas Burns.

He asked the judge to not give Hardy the maximum due to his age and medical issues. Burns said Hardy has struggled with drugs himself for much of his adult life. Burns also said Hardy was not violent and did not threaten witnesses with the latest crimes.

Orleans County Court Judge James Punch gave Hardy the maximum sentence. The judge said whenever Hardy has been released from jail or prison he almost immediately went back to using and selling drugs.

“If anybody fits the definition of a drug dealer it is you,” Punch told Hardy during sentencing. “I don’t think you’ve ever tried to stop using drugs and you’ve spread that poison throughout the community.”

Hardy was arrested on April 1 with 15 others following a six-month investigation into the sale and distribution of crack cocaine, heroin, prescription narcotics and marijuana in the village of Albion, the Orleans County Major Felony Crime Task Force reported at the time.

Hardy was living at 262 East Bank St. when he was arrested. He has been in jail without bail since then due to his criminal history.