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  1. Balzafire
    GAFFNEY, S.C. - A 28-year-old Cherokee County man who sold $10 worth of crack to an undercover informant has been sentenced to life in prison without parole under the state's repeat offender law.

    Prosecutors say James R. Byers, Jr. was sentenced Wednesday after he was convicted of third offense distribution of crack cocaine and distribution of crack cocaine within a half mile of a school or park.

    Byers' prior criminal record includes five drug convictions.

    Prosecutors say Byers sold the crack to an informant in August 2009 near an elementary school. Cherokee County sheriff's deputies videotaped the transaction.

    By AP
    April 21, 2011


  1. Terrapinzflyer
    while this is an injustice- and as much a commentary on the failure of the society as much as the individual... I would be curious to know the exact parameters of SC's laws.

    Most states with "3 strikes" laws require at least two of the felonies to be violent. And really- 5 convictions for crimes committed in an 8 or 9 year span? One really has to try to accomplish that...

    Still- mandatory treatment seems a far more humane option...
  2. Balzafire
    I was curious..... no I wasn't. I knew this had to be a black guy. Sure enough,

  3. xJSL
    This is ridiculous. Especially with the recent news of U.S. and Mexican governments protecting a drug cartel.
  4. DamnIMissMaryJ
    I wonder how close he was to the school? Considering in a half-mile there are 6 city blocks, he could have been well away from the school. Irregardless, I feel for the guy even though he is a repeat offender. I can imagine when he gets to prison and is asked the question "what are you in for" no-one would believe him if he told the truth.
  5. kailey_elise
    The "school zone" laws are bullshit, and only in place so that an offender can "plead down" to plain ol' possession; if it weren't set up that way, many people would get their possession charge tossed & would plead down to "trespassing" or something.

    In Lynn, Massachusetts (can't speak for other areas of Massachusetts; probably the same), if you get picked up with drugs, you ALWAYS get at least 2 charges: possession of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance in a school zone. Now, there were people lobbying to get that "school zone" shit thrown out and here's why:

    A "school zone", at least in Lynn, is defined as being within 1000 feet of a "school". A "school" is defined basically as "a place where children congregate" & included in this are: parks, playgrounds, schools, and day care centers, including in-home day care. If I recall correctly, someone figured out that EVERYWHERE in Lynn is a "school zone" as defined by these rules - & if you look at the police reports in Lynn, you'll notice that almost without fail, any drug arrest charge is accompanied by the same offense but in a school zone.

    This makes the law worthless. When I was an active drug addict, my apartment was a block away from a school. The law was initially put into place to stop "those evil drug pushers in the schoolyard taking advantage of our children" (who don't exist - trust me, I looked as a youth); instead they slam it on people who didn't even notice a school was around & are adults dealing with other adults.

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